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Bible in Ancient Christianity
D. Jeﬀrey Bingham
Editorial Board General Editor
Brian E. Daley Robin M. Jensen Christoph Markschies Maureen A. Tilley Robert L. Wilken Frances M. Young
Reading the Old Testament in Antioch
Robert C. Hill
LEIDEN • BOSTON 2005
Cover design: Jeannet Leendertse Cover art: Adapted from Greek New Testament, with Erasmus’s translation into Latin. Special Collections Division, Georgetown University Library. This book is printed on acid-free paper.
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Hill, Robert C. (Robert Charles), 1931– Reading the Old Testament in Antioch / by Robert C. Hill. p. cm. — (Bible in ancient Christianity, ISSN 1542-1295 ; v. 5) Includes bibliographical references and indexes. ISBN 90-04-14538-9 (hard : alk. paper) 1. Bible. O.T.—Criticism, interpretation, etc. 2. Antioch (Turkey)—Church history. 3. Christianity—Origin. 4. Church history—Primitive and early church, ca. 30–600. I. Title. II. Series. BS1171.3.H55 2005 221.6'0939'43—dc22 2005047111
ISSN 1542-1295 ISBN 90 04 14538 9 © Copyright 2005 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands. Koninklijke Brill NV incorporates the imprints Brill Academic Publishers, Martinus Nijhoﬀ Publishers and VSP. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, translated, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission from the publisher. Authorization to photocopy items for internal or personal use is granted by Brill provided that the appropriate fees are paid directly to The Copyright Clearance Center, 222 Rosewood Drive, Suite 910, Danvers, MA 01923, USA. Fees are subject to change. printed in the netherlands
in friendship and esteem .For Louis J. Swift.
....... F................................ D............................. 4................... Exegetical skills and resources in Antioch ........................... A.............. D. C............ A canon within the canon .......................................................................... E.............................. Antioch commentators’ biblical text .. An Antioch canon ................ The Hebrew text a closed book .......... C............ Tradition of the faith in Antioch ...................... B.......................... 6...... B......................... 1.................................................. A........... D..... Mantic possession or the Spirit’s guidance? ............................. A............................................... Authors and works divinely-inspired ....................................... 5... Psalms .. ix xi 1 2 3 5 7 10 19 20 23 24 27 28 31 32 35 39 43 47 48 50 54 57 63 64 74 85 86 ................... The text of the Old Testament read in Antioch .... Establishing and critiquing a text ................................ Abbreviations ............ Revelation in word and writing ........ A... Antioch a privileged community ......................... A.. 3...................................................................................... Availability of a biblical text ..................................................... A theology of the revealing Word .. The canon of the Old Testament in Antioch ..................................................... E. Authorship and text history . B.............. C................. Antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation .......................... A................ B.......................... Literary and philosophical education in Antioch ... B.....................CONTENTS Preface ....... A Christian collection of Jewish books ... 2.. Pastors of the Antioch churches .............. C........ Old Testament commentary in Antioch .............. Revelation Old and New ............................ Faith formation in Antioch .......................... Origin and character of the Antioch text .......... Antioch in fourth and ﬁfth centuries .................... An obscure revelation ................
.......... The commentator and his readers .... A................. D.......... A distinctively Antiochene approach ............................................... Accounting for Antioch’s approach ........................................................... Trinitarian accents ............................... Assessing Antioch’s achievement ................................................................. Christological accents ................... Prophets .................................. The preacher and his congregation ................ 92 100 107 108 112 117 123 135 136 139 150 154 159 167 169 172 177 183 184 186 189 195 195 197 198 203 211 215 219 7........ C............... 10.......... Select Bibliography ............................................................................................................................ A belief in the Old Testament ........................ B............................................ A....... Where lies the truth? .............................. A legitimate search for other meanings .. The primacy of the historical sense .............. 11............................. ............................. Theodore . A....... C..... C.......... A. Interpreting the Old Testament in Antioch .............................................. Octateuch.................................. Pastoral and spiritual guidance ..... A commitment to pastoral care ................................ An asceticism without mysticism ..................................... 8................................ C........... Moral accents ........................ 9....................................................... Index of biblical citations ....................................... Theological accents in Old Testament commentary ..... E........ Antiochene approach to the task of commentary . A........ Diodore ........... C................... historical books................. Index of modern authors ........................... General Index .......... B.............. John Chrysostom ...................... “The letter killeth” .................... B................. Song of Songs ................ Theodoret ............viii contents B........................... B..................................................... C..... B................. D................
midway through the period studied in this volume that begins with the council of Nicea in 325 and extends to the council of Chalcedon in 451. is a reminder that Antioch is not used here as a univocal term in the sense of the city founded by Seleucus on the river Orontes. Both activities. that it is a Christian endeavor he is commencing. in fact. susceptible of an Antiochene approach. Such an exercise attempted in the past has generally proven . one might say. have survived entirely. that practice also beﬁts a Christian family. evaluating the approach of the Antiochenes by contrasting it with that of commentators elsewhere in that period or with modern western approaches to the Bible. Mopsuestia and Cyrus. In the interests of precision it should be noted as well that this is not a comparative study.PREFACE In his second sermon on Genesis given in Antioch in 386. the books and their meaning belong to us. that “though the books are from them. though evidence bears especially on the latter. Initiation of the faithful into Antioch’s theological mindset rested also on an appreciation of the Old. The Old Testament commentaries composed by Theodoret towards the end of our period. reading and commentary. the name stood also for a vast dioikêsis comprising ﬁfteen provinces of the empire and an ecclesiastical district with jurisdiction over many sees such as Tarsus. Mention of Theodoret. are the object of study here. its very obscurity and diversity made it more incarnational and for that reason. thanks to the degree of survival both of written works and of homilies delivered orally in its churches. as he is also assuring his listeners that when they take the books in hand at home (as he urges them to do). particularly as practiced at Antioch. By the period under consideration here. John Chrysostom makes an admission to his congregation about the Jewish origins of the Old Testament. appointed bishop of Cyrus (Cyrrhus) in 423. at the outset of a long career of commentary on these works. less familiar though it may be.” He is perhaps assuring himself. their relative bulk suggesting that this ancient and obscure material represented a more urgent and more challenging demand on a pastor’s ministry than the New.
is aimed at here is an examination of the text of the commentaries of the leading Antiochene ﬁgures. In the course of analysis of these many commentaries and the reading strategies they illustrate. In expressing appreciation to the general editor of Bible in Ancient Christianity. they have suﬀered enough from prejudice. less well known than the New but (with the exception of Chrysostom’s) better represented in extant remains in Greek. D. in fact. light will be thrown on a signiﬁcant if sometimes misrepresented chapter in the history of Christian reading and biblical commentary. Jeﬀrey Bingham. Such textual examination will hopefully throw light on aspects of Antioch’s approach to the Old Testament. for the beneﬁt of those scholars less familiar with them. coming from a biblical background. What. . If this is achieved. The writer. the author also regrets having had to complete it before the appearance of Charles Kannengiesser’s opening volumes. has been interested in reading and translating their Old Testament works.x preface to be unhelpful. of which modern commentators and general readers might well take account. We intend to take the commentators and their works as we ﬁnd them. and lead to recognition of the distinctive worldview that accounts for it. abundant reference is made to the text to help conclusions be more cogent. as the paucity of extant works of some of them demonstrates. for inclusion of this work in the series and for his patience. who ﬂourished in the period roughly from the council of Nicea in 325 to Chalcedon in 451 (Theodoret dying a decade later).
Deﬁnitionum et Declarationum. edd. Turnhout: Brepols Corpus Christianorum: Series latina. H. Washington DC: Catholic University of America Press Göttinger Orientforschungen. Brisbane: Australian Catholic University Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses Estudios Bíblicos Fathers of the Church. Turnhout: Brepols Clavis patrum graecorum. Supplément. Schönmetzer. 34th ed. Washington DC: Catholic University of America Press Septuagint . Leiden-Boston: Brill Biblica Bulletin of the John Rylands University Library of Manchester Corpus Christianorum: Series graeca. Bonn: A. Denzinger. Paris: Librairie Letouzey et Ané Enchiridion Symbolorum. Freiburg: Herder. Marcus und E. Paris: Librairie Letouzey et Ané Early Christian Sudies. Weber’s Verlag Library of Early Christianity.ABBREVIATIONS AAS AB AnBib ASE Aug BAC Bib BJRL CCG CCL CPG DBSup DS DTC ECS ETL EstBib FOTC GO GOTR HeyJ ICC ITQ JAC JECS JTS KlT LEC LXX Acta Apostolicae Sedis Anchor Bible Analecta biblica. 1967 Dictionnaire de théologie catholique. A. Turnhout: Brepols Dictionnaire de la Bible. Roma: Pontiﬁcio Istituto Biblico Annali di storia dell’ esegesi Augustinianum Bible in Ancient Christianity.. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowtiz Greek Orthodox Theological Review The Heythrop Journal International Critical Commentary. Edinburgh: T&T Clark Irish Theological Quarterly Jahrbuch für Antike und Christentums Journal of Early Christian Studies Journal of Theological Studies Kleine Texte für Vorlesungen und Übungen.
eds. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang Orientalia Christiana Analecta Orientalia Christiana Periodica Old Testament Library..xii MSU NJBC NS ÖBS OCA OCP OTL PG PL RB RHT RSPT SBL SC ST StudP SVTQ TGl TS TRE VC VTS WGRW abbreviations Mitteilungen des Septuaginta-Unternehmens. Leiden: Brill Writings from the Greco-Roman World. Englewood Cliﬀs NJ: Prentice Hall. Raymond E. London: SCM Patrologia graeca Patrologia latina Revue biblique Revue d’Histoire des Textes Revue des sciences philosophiques et théologiques Society of Biblical Literature Sources chrétiennes. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht New Jerome Biblical Commentary. Supplement. Città del Vaticano: Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana Studia Patristica St Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly Theologie und Glaube Theological Studies Theologische Realenzyklopädie Vigiliae Christianae Vetus Testamentum. Brown et al. Paris: Du Cerf Studi e Testi. 1990 new series Österreichische Biblische Studien. Atlanta: SBL .
Antioch. city and province .
Jews included. And the literature that has come into our possession from the words and writings of early Christian commentators. The Jewish scriptures. however. These scriptures. Israel” (cf.” Paul assures his Roman converts (Rom 10:17). too. by catechetical initiation and explication. Paul’s citation of the Jewish texts to his converts in Rome shows that their faith. It may not be the direct experience of the Jesus of the public ministry enjoyed by eyewitnesses. by moral suasion and encouragement. to allow us to tap into the original experience and to share in a life-giving koinvn¤a. Hence his letter to the Romans.CHAPTER ONE TRADITION OF THE FAITH IN ANTIOCH “Faith comes through hearing. or tradition. and hence also the other Christian scriptures. by homiletic commentary and development. 6:4) was and is a life-giving injunction for their faith. by familial example and demonstration. One such traditional form of faith development. Evangelization. and by citation of Isaiah 52:7 and Psalm 19:5 he argues that to everyone. he and we others after him have depended on a range of forms of transmission. making their confession and deepening their commitment in still other ways—by liturgical and sacramental anamnesis. and in other traditional ways. celebrants. homilists and mentors of various kinds testify to this fertile process of tradition of the faith that operated in the burgeoning community. the opportunity has been given to hear the eÈagg°lion. Old and New. Jesus himself sharing in that traditional process. was the reading and explication of the . as it was not in Paul’s own case. describe both peoples. of course. the Church of his day and ours realizes that communities and individuals must be brought to experience constantly God’s action in Jesus for that faith to be nourished. is not enough. catechists. celebrating and conﬁrming their faith in God. fulﬁlled—and still fulﬁl— that function in the case of the Jewish people: “Listen. old and new. which by being read out and distributed to a growing number of communities nourished the faith of believers in the early Church. could be nourished by attending to the Word both old and new. too. Deuteronomy 5:1.
16. Gal 1:18. evidence of its exercise is happily quite abundant.” NJBC. the young church of Antioch enjoyed a uniquely sustained period of traditional formation in the faith by leading apostolic ﬁgures.” 3 Cf.4 It 1 For Wayne A.” 2 It was later in that decade that the incident occurred of Paul’s diﬀerence with Peter in Antioch over the extent of table fellowship between Jews and Gentiles (Gal 2:11–18)—a further indication of the Gentile character of this sect of Judaism in that city. this ﬁrst Gentile community had the advantage of being not only evangelized but also of having Paul (and Barnabas) spend a year (perhaps 44–45) meeting with them and “teaching (didãjai) a great number of them. had become by Paul’s time a jewel in the Roman crown. but also commentary on the Jewish scriptures (in which he claimed particular expertise: Gal 1:14) and eucharistic celebration of “the Lord’s death” of which he speaks to another such community (1 Cor 11:23–29). As well. A. Antioch. where the purpose of Paul’s ﬁfteen-day stay with Peter was (as suggested by the term ﬂstor∞sai) “to get information from him about Jesus’ ministry. 783. S. Jews and Christians in Antioch in the First Four Centuries of the Common Era. . In fact. Meeks and Robert L. the phrase in Acts means that “it was in Antioch that (the Christians) ﬁrst stood out from Judaism as a distinct sect.” in the view of J.”2 This year-long course in faith development doubtless involved not only mediating to them what Paul himself had learnt from his mentors about the Lord Jesus3 and catechesis in the Lord’s teachings. “The incident at Antioch (Gal 2:11–18). the Old and the New. Wilken. A. its position on the commercial highway reaching from Asia to the Mediterranean through its nearby port of Seleucia. 4 Cf.2 chapter one community’s scriptures. Dunn. Downey. the ﬁrst to be called Christians (Acts 11:26 tells us). This privilege was not without justiﬁcation. G. Luke presents them in his history as the initial exception to the general rule of proclaiming the Lord Jesus “to no one except Jews” (11:19). Wallace-Hadrill. Fitzmyer. its status as capital of Syria and a military and diplomatic centre in the empire. D.1 were also beneﬁciaries of this manifold process of faith development. J. Christian Antioch. In other words. A History of Antioch in Syria from Seleucus to the Arab Conquest. Antioch a privileged community Believers in the church of Antioch. and its architectural splendor. “Galatians. Cf. G. by dint of its foundation by Alexander’s general Seleucus. 1–5. D.
Bishop. attacking Origen’s homily on the witch of Endor (1 Sam 28). While in his Commentary on Daniel he associates Roman rule with “submission. the most notable being one at Daphne containing the relics of St Babylas. Theodoret at diﬀerent times in his career registers the general appreciation felt in the region of Antioch for the Pax Romana and regret at its disruption.6 B. Mopsuestia and Edessa in the north and west. Klostermann (KlT 83). Studies in Early Christian and Byzantine Homiletics. Antioch in fourth and fifth centuries By the time of the council of Nicea in 325—which may appropriately mark the beginning of the period of this study of Antioch. 5 In the town proper there were three or four parish churches. dates it before the beginning of the Arian controversy. N.7 a period concluding with the death of Theodoret of Cyrus around 460—this city. and puts the death of Eustathius before 337. that would prove the bugbear of Christian pastors and draw their criticism. the Persians nominated as the villains of the piece. was nevertheless a signature statement of Antioch’s approach to biblical texts. 303. including the Old Church. orgiastic festivals and a range of other amusements. and sees it continuing from its inception under Augustus till the Second Coming (“The Roman kingdom remained in power under him. Mayer. to which Chrysostom refers in commenting on Ps 111 (PG 55. Allen (eds). ordinary audience.5 By that time Antioch had become the capital of the vast dio¤khsiw of Oriens comprising ﬁfteen provinces of the empire extending from Mesopotamia to the borders of Egypt. The History. it has begun to deteriorate by his next work. Quasten. 342–50. Downey. destroyed during the Diocletian persecution and rebuilt between 313 and 324. 126–27. races. centre of a vast civil region and an ecclesiastical diocese that stretched from Tyre and Damascus in the south to the minor sees of Tarsus. His sole surviving work. Preacher and Audience. 7 Only a year later Eustathius was deposed as bishop of Antioch by the Arians after having been the ﬁrst to speak at the council. Golden Mouth. 6 J. B. Ascetic. 1. On the other hand.tradition of the faith in antioch 3 was also a city well-provided with facilities for public enjoyment of games. and the later Psalms Commentary laments the assault of the Persians in 441. Kelly. There were also martyrs’ shrines. cf. . thanks to the liberality of emperors and governors. Patrology 3. Cunningham. The number of churches is debated by W. built in the third century. Preacher. good order and the rule of law” (and taxes). his son Constantius completing the structure. The Story of St John Chrysostom. on Ezekiel. “John Chrysostom: extraordinary preacher. Critically edited by E. D. this liberality also extended to provision of ﬁne church buildings: Constantine began the construction of an octagonal Great Church on the island in the river Orontes on which the imperial palace stood.” in M. P.285). which was dedicated in 341. and has lasted even to this day”). wild beast hunts.
Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. At that time the New Rome of Constantine to the north was still some years from inauguration to replace the old Byzantium on the Bosphorus. now uncontested by Antioch or by that other ancient seat of learning more to the west and south.” . her father likewise said. Wilken. perhaps responsible for earning him a second sobriquet. 78–79.4 chapter one had attained such prominence as to be recognized by that council as enjoying a precedence accorded also to the sees of Rome and Alexandria. 10 It could be that a statue erected at Daphne to the tyche of Rome under Julius Caesar prompted Theodoret’s Question 88 on Genesis. So let no one think such words are those of the divine Scripture: the author includes what is said by those who are not religious because he is relaying facts. that it was to a city of some 200. 9 M. Ioudaiophrôn.” 498.10 Julian the Apostate endeavoured to sub- 8 R. testifying to the inﬂuence Jews wielded and the perceived dangers of syncretism. Anti-Jewish sentiment surfaces frequently in the works of the biblical commentators under consideration here. this is not the basis for any criticism of them by Chrysostom. Theodoret is clearly on the defensive: “The expression ‘I am in luck’ was not Jacob’s but Leah’s. notes that though Libanius in his letters testiﬁed to the wealth of the Jews. 60. Its population and importance grew so rapidly. Alexandria. 57. Rhetoric and Reality in the Later Fourth Century. a boast made by Porphyry and Julian (79).8 And yet this Jewish community’s tradition of Old Testament exegesis left its mark on a Christian commentator like Theodore. a woman. “Why does Scripture mention tÊxh?” (in reference to Leah’s choosing Gad—LXX eÈtÊxhka—as a name in 30:11). the ill-feeling spilling over into rioting that went on for the next seven centuries. as I remarked. the city’s numerous Jewish community knew they had suﬀered discrimination since the time of Antiochus IV Epiphanes. If it was at Antioch that the preference given by Jesus and his followers to the evangelizing of Jews was ﬁrst rescinded in favor of Gentiles.000 or more people (much the size of Antioch) that Theodosius I summoned the second ecumenical council in 381. More to the point may have been the Jews’ claim to have been in Antioch longer than the Christians. L. ‘I took omens.’ whereas the divine Law forbids recourse to omens.9 Pagan cults of semitic. John Chryostom and the Jews. which declared the bishop of Constantinople to have precedence next after the bishop of Rome. however. Daphne a few miles to the west of Antioch became the site of shrines and temples built there by Epiphanes and a succession of Roman emperors. “Theodore of Mopsuestia as representative of the Antiochene school. raised in irreligion and schooled only brieﬂy in divine things. Hellenistic and Roman origin also abounded in Syria. Wiles.
like the crosses suddenly engraved on the garments. Marcion’s dualism and consequent assault on the Old Testament was a related aberration that earned the ire of Antiochene Fathers.tradition of the faith in antioch 5 ject Christianity to such pagan worship. some of whom have bequeathed to us the 11 R.11 Gnostic groups of various hues were also rife. John Chrysostom and the Jews. biblical. Pss 110.12 Though Antioch hosted none of the early ecumenical councils. their introduction and nourishment in the faith through such traditions were in that period in the charge of outstanding pastors. It may be a conventional listing (Didymus often has recourse to a similar one). resisted earlier by Ignatius but still promoting docetic and Valentinian views in the period under discussion. the surprising death of the imperial treasurer. as did Manichean depiction of a world divided between the powers of Light and Darkness and their denying moral freedom in human beings. in which the key ﬁgures in focus here took part. the conspicuous victory over the demon. the translation of the holy martyr Babylas who was in Daphne. despite the Church’s resistance? How many in the time of Maximin? How many before those awful emperors? If you prefer. C. at least Diodore and Theodoret are on record as taking conspicuous roles in the second and fourth of those councils.” 12 Marcion and Mani regularly feature in the rogues gallery Chrysostom parades before his classes in the didaskale›on in Antioch in the course of his treatment of (ﬁfty eight) Psalms (e. who surpassed everyone for impiety.” Chrysostom in commentary on Ps 111:4 (PG 55. in this diverse religious environment there was plenty of scope for the multi-pronged faith formation of Antioch Christians provided by catechetical. In short. 145. liturgical and other forms of tradition in the community. trinitarian and Christological debate was in the air.285) speaks of the ups-and-downs of life in Antioch with the rise and fall of rulers like Julian: “How many marvels occurred in the time of Julian. however. who surpassed everyone for impiety.. the actual removal of the emperor Julian himself. respectively. Chrysostom’s exegetical homilies do not develop into full scale theological polemic. in which the loyalties and allegiances of Christians were constantly shifting. Pastors of the Antioch churches Fortunately for these believers. the razing of the temple of Apollo by a thunderbolt. 148).g. but his failure was due less to the brevity of his stay in Antioch in 362–63 than to Antioch’s having become by then a predominantly Christian city (if rent by internal ecclesiastical divisions). there were those happening in our generation. . Wilken. as we shall see in Chapter Nine. 30. 144. speaks of Antioch as “a competitive religious environment.
which won him a glowing tribute from the emperor Theodosius. His extant homilies and treatises delivered to the faithful in these churches are unsurpassed in number by those of any other Greek Father. G. Also contributing to their education was Antioch’s oﬃcial rhetorician. Tarsus in Cilicia. Chrysostom did not return the compliment. another see in the district of Antioch). endorsing Eustathius’s uncritical rejection of Origen-style scriptural interpretation. and conducted a busy ministry of the liturgy and the Word in Antioch before his consecration as bishop of Constantinople in 398. cf. note 7 above. taking occasion in his works to criticize Libanius along with emperor Julian for attacks on the Church.14 The loss after his death before 394 of most of his vast commentary on the Old Testament is due to implied involvement in the doctrines of Nestorius. the man who would be responsible (after Lucian.” 764–65. C. 2 (PG 67. “Diodor von Tarsus. His orthodoxy is attested to by his conspicuous resistance to Julian the Apostate during the latter’s residence in Antioch in 362–63. he had also studied philosophy and rhetoric in Athens. or éskhtÆrion. 15 Sozomen. Eustathius had been the ﬁrst to speak at Nicea. Cf. D. Hunter. 14 13 .15 Instead. “Libanius and John Chrysostom: New thoughts on an old problem. Diodore’s most famous students in the Antioch asketerion were John (later spoken of as Chrysostom for his oratorical gifts) and Theodore (later appointed bishop in Mopsuestia. Diodore. played a key role in the biblical education of budding churchmen in his seminary.” StudP 22 (1989) 129–35. his immunity from theological criticism being partly Cf.13 The work was clearly a factor in the biblical formation of the Antiochene Diodore. before appointment in 378 as bishop in one of the sees in the district of Antioch.6 chapter one literary remains that are the object of study here. and left the inﬂuential tractate against Origen’s approach to Scripture that summed up the approach that would be adopted by later Antiochenes.113). who saw in the former student his ideal successor. Schäublin. and by his participation in the council of Constantinope in 381. the pagan sophist Libanius. Historia Ecclesiastica 8. John was ordained to the diaconate by the bishop Meletius and to the priesthood by his successor Flavian. Though bishop of the city itself for only a short period before deposition by an Arian synod in 326. martyred in 312) for developing the distinctive exegetical and hermeneutical method subsequently associated with Antioch.
though ordained priest and bishop about the same time as his friend Chrysostom. Theodoret has no qualms about admitting familiarity with “the norms of allegory” (PG 81.40). The view is that of Theodoret. however. dogmatic and historical works. “Johannes Chrysostomus. J.”20 He would proceed to compose other biblical. 18 Cf. Syriac was spoken by peasants. Literary and philosophical education in Antioch In the period under discussion. to Eusebius of Ancyra (SC 98. though sometimes credited with close association with Theodore and Nestorius.21 the last of these four great Antiochene biblical commentators. Theodore in 428). the psalter and the apostle. He died around 460.202).19 he was appointed bishop of nearby Cyrus (Cyrrhus) in 423. Mephasqana. “Theodoret von Kyrrhos.1277). despite his deposition. as John and Theodore were moving to the pastoral care of the churches of Constantinople and Mopsuestia. on the Song of Songs. as we shall see below.16 Theodore’s works did not enjoy the same fate. He would hardly have known these predecessors ( John dying in 407. D. Church History 5. Having experienced monastic life at Apamea on the Euphrates to the north east of Antioch.”17 he was condemned at the ﬁfth ecumenical council of 553 and most of his works were lost. Antioch became the birthplace also of Theodoret. To the Syriac Church in that same century. he became known as The Interpreter. a dialect of Aramaic acquired Cf. he could claim in a letter in 448 that he had commented on “all the prophets. Leroux. 20 Ep 82. respectively. Bruns. His works on Psalms and Prophets also show inﬂuence of Cyril and Eusebius of Caesarea. which Diodore’s students would not have enjoyed.” 118–27. he was rapidly reinstated and involved in the convocation of the council of Chalcedon in 451. 21 Cf. Guinot.-N. J. 19 In his ﬁrst exegetical work. and in his pastoral career likewise producing a vast amount of biblical commentary and dogmatic exposition as “a teacher of the whole Church in battle against every heretical column.-M.40 (PG 82.tradition of the faith in antioch 7 responsible for their survival. Despite active involvement in theological debate and participation in the council of Ephesus in 431. his death closing the period of this study. 17 16 .” 250–54. P. for instance. at least city dwellers of Antioch spoke Greek. “Theodor von Mopsuestia.” 240–46. and enjoying a distinctive introduction to principles of biblical commentary held in Alexandria.18 In the next generation.
.8 chapter one by Theodoret at his mother’s knee. 112–114. 96. 102–103. Stoics. Antiochene Christianity was in its essence unphilosophical . 129) in reference to Solomon’s wisdom and that of the Egyptians. The sense in which the term is admissible is that which credits them with an Aristotelian frame of mind or outlook. 24 For these inﬂuences evident in the work of Didymus. Doutreleau. . though often credited with being Aristotelian. . . 23 Christian Antioch. “Arabic transmission of Greek thought to Medieval Europe. It is only in a general sense that the Christian writers of Antioch can be called Aristotelian. 101–102. contributed more to the study of Aristotle than did Antioch. The Antiochenes appear to have been unaware of the possibility of such support or uninterested in making use of it. David Wallace-Hadrill concludes. P. Canivet. that the eastern church as a whole abandoned philosophy during the fourth and ﬁfth centuries—the period under discussion here. The Antioch Fathers in their tradition of the faith show little explicit indebtedness to philosophy. and this is probably true of many of them even when they had little knowledge of Aristotle’s works . We shall note in Chapter Four that the Antioch Fathers shared the general patristic ignorance of Hebrew. Pythagoreans and Philo.22 and an asset in trying to wrestle with Hebrew terms lying behind his Greek biblical text. The Antiochene characteristically thought in terms of history and Scripture . 25 In response to Q. Sur Zacharie. see L. Walzer. but an unfamiliar language to Theodore and despised by him. Didymus l’Aveugle.25 On 22 Cf. We may look in vain for an attempt to base their historical or scriptural standpoint upon a logical or metaphysical foundation derived from Aristotle.4 on 1 Kings (Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Reges et Paralipomena. . Theodoret will mention a range of Greek philosophers likewise indebted to the Egyptians: “Recourse .24 None of this is acknowledged or utilized in Antioch by Theodore and Theodoret in their later works on this prophet composed with Didymus open before them.” Bulletin of John Rylands Library 29 (1945) 169. 108. Certainly an Alexandrian commentator like Didymus the Blind in his Commentary on Zechariah invokes the terminology and categories of Aristotle along with Peripatetics. 26–27.23 The question is of relevance for us in our stated intention of accounting for the distinctive approach to the Old Testament found in Antiochene commentators. Wallace-Hadrill further claims that Alexandria. Wallace-Hadrill also cites the claim of R. . putatively indebted especially to Plato through Philo. Histoire d’une entreprise apologétique au V e siècle. which we shall see (in Chapter Eleven) is but part of a much more comprehensive—and distinctive—mindset. I.
175.28 It is to Greek rhetoric. Hatch also claims. and yevr¤a (discernment by the reader of a further level of meaning). R. tÚ ﬂstorikÒn (the factual element). In the case of Chrysostom and Theodore we know from the historian Socrates that it was in the classes of the city’s oﬃcial rhetorician.” Frances Young maintains. diãnoia (its thrust. it is not to be regretted that we do not ﬁnd in them the ﬂawed numerology that Didymus derives from Philo to account for the dating of the prophet’s visions based on the erroneous version he is using of Zech 1:7. 30 Untersuchungen zu Methode und Herkunft der Antiochenischen Exegese. it was not uninﬂuenced by grammarians. or such elaborated discourses as they also gave upon the speculative and ehtical aspects of religion. 29 The Inﬂuence of Greek Ideas on Christianity. rhetoricians and historians of a kind. or overall meaning). paide¤a. If Antiochene education in this period did not have a strongly philosophical basis. 3 (PG 67.” 26 Biblical Exegesis and the Formation of Christian Culture. in the rhetorical schools. Anaxagoras of Klazomene and Plato the Athenian in the hope of gaining from them a more precise knowledge of theology and natural philosophy. 109–113. and in Chapter 7 we shall see the Antiochenes adopting them in their commentaries. the pagan Libanius. friend of Julian. “Antiochene exegesis is grounded in the exegetical activities of the rhetorical schools. its ÍpÒyesiw (theme. Pythagoras of Samos. 168.27 This rhetorical education under Libanius we see reﬂected in Chrysostom’s homilies (Edwin Hatch assures us). that they were introduced to these canons.665–668). explaining the complimentary reference to them by Photius in the ninth century as ımil¤ai rather than mere lÒgoi because of the homilist’s engagement with the listeners.tradition of the faith in antioch 9 the other hand. 27 Historia Ecclesiastica 6. that we owe not just the early Christian homily but also such an exegesis of the sacred books as the Sophists gave of Homer. 28 Bibliotheca 172 ed. Schäublin . 158–70. •rmhne¤a (its interpretation). These are the terms and categories of traditional education. or narrative setting).29 As a further guidance to their reading of the sacred writings they would (claims Christoph Schäublin)30 have been introduced to the to them was had by Pherecydes the Syrian. Henry II.26 seeing in such schools the source of the accent to be found in Diodore (and Eustathius before him) and his pupils Theodore and John Chrysostom and later in Theodoret on the skopos (or purpose) of the author in composing his biblical work. l°jiw (the biblical text).
”33 If that aim was not shared by Libanius in his rhetoric classes. For other views on the extent of pagan inﬂuence on the Antiochenes’ education.31 The accents they gave to Psalms and Prophets. the pious Monica. Porphyry. Plutarch. probably in some private house.10 chapter one hermeneutical principles of Aristarchus. and evident in the biblical commentaries of its exponents. Strabo and Eratosthenes. does not see the asketerion simply as a monastery: “It seems more realistic to envisage Diodore’s pupils as a close-knit fellowship of dedicated Christians who. namely. it would have been pre-eminent in the institutions of spiritual formation. while staying in their separate homes and living in the world. 34 Kelly. study the bible and hear expositions on it. see A. the faith formation of the communities for which they as Christian pastors would be responsible. and particularly the hermeneutical perspective they adopted in interpreting them. 19. 162–167).” 404–405.” . claiming. the ultimate purpose did not diﬀer. on his receiving a good grounding in the pagan classics as a preparation for his becoming one day a good Christian. accepted self-imposed rules of rigorous self-denial and met together. “The most important thing these so-called schools had in common was a desire to foster the life of faith. 185.34 and the monastery Theodoret joined at Apamea. All of these men were prepared in this rounded way for ministry in churches within the larger Antioch jurisdiction. Schäublin takes these to illustrate the inﬂuence on him of Porphyry. the biblical tradition of Christianity that was mediated to the faithful in Antioch in these decades at the hands of distinguished pastors came colored by the education they themselves had received. “Theodor sein Rüstzeug als Interpret der paganen Grammatik verdankt” (158). As a result. 31 It is a fact reminiscent of the insistence of Augustine’s mother. Golden Mouth. 33 Young. can be traced to these pagan authors. Plutarch. for example. Faith formation in Antioch Comprehensive ministry to the faithful requires exercise of all those forms of tradition itemized at the beginning of this chapter: liturgi- takes Theodore as a case in point. and be counselled by the master in ascetic withdrawal. Biblical Exegesis. like the asketerion presided over by Diodore that John Chrysostom and Theodore attended.32 If the ministerial formation at Antioch did not reﬂect the more philosophical approach favored in that other seat of learning. to pray. E. Alexandria. 32 Theodore’s extant Old Testament commentaries being those on the Twelve Prophets and the Psalms. Eratosthenes and Aristarchus in particular (Untersuchungen. “Das formale Verfahren der antiochenischen Schriftauslegung. Viciano.
“Chrysostom’s Commentary on the Psalms: homilies or tracts?” 36 Cf.” in A. catechetical (not to mention the lived experience of Christians in families and parishes). 28) “l’ignorance où sommes au sujet du lectionnaire biblique dans la liturgie byzantine. Prédication de Chrysostome à Constantinople et notamment à Saint-Irène. remains that betray both the common adherence to the faith of the apostles as well as the inﬂuence on the commentators of diﬀering educational and philosophical positions and processes. couvrant l’ensemble de l’année liturgique. Hill.” also claiming that “un système de lectures. for instance. While most of them were delivered in churches during liturgical or paraliturgical ceremonies (as distinct from a classroom venue. In the case of an orator like Chrysostom we have—thanks to the remarkable resources of stenography in the ancient world recorded for us by Eusebius. and copyists (bibliÒgrafoi) no fewer in number.. 794. n’avait pas encore été élaboré et généralisé à Constantinople. Encyclopedia of the Eary Church 2. in regard to Origen’s dictation and preaching35—over eight hundred homilies extant. J. De Ghellinck. R. cf. ed. Aubineau. II Introductions et complément à l’étude de la patristique. he had available more than seven shorthand writers (taxÊgrafoi). Hamman.” Aubineau admits (537.” . dès le temps de Chrysostome. C. as also to other orators even from classical antiquity. homiletic. 6. au codex Saint-Sabas 32. like the didaskale›on he mentions in the course of his large series of homilies on the Psalter). n’avait pas encore été élaboré et généralisé à Constantinople dès le temps de Chrysostome. n. H. Patristique et moyen age: études d’histoire littéraire et doctrinale.2): “As he dictated. doctrinal. moral. of which the bulk deal with Old and New Testament works or pericopes.E.” JTS 43 (1992) 537: “Un système de lectures. A. who interchanged with one another at set intervals. 23 (SC 41. 217. the pastors of these communities regarded it as a principal role to familiarize them with the magnalia Dei to be found in the scriptures Old and New. we are not in possession of the lectionaries of the period that would allow us always to pinpoint the particular occasion when some scriptural text was set down for homiletic explication in the liturgy of the Word in a church.tradition of the faith in antioch 11 cal.123. as well as girls trained in penmanship (kalligrafe›n). Di Berardino. Though liturgy may claim to be prima theologia. and though Paul’s letters to his communities show them already being nourished in their faith by the anamnesis and celebration of the Christian Passover before his writings became Holy Writ for them. As a result we have—despite the ravages of time and the ﬂames of prejudice— voluminous remains of biblical commentary from pastors in the churches of Antioch as of other centres. Eusebius.36 The custom of preaching on 35 Cf. “Stenography.” Similar banks of stenographers were available to Origen in his preaching. “Restitution de quartorze folios du codex hierosolymitain. couvrant l’ensemble de l’année litrurique. à très haute époque. Photios 47. M. biblical.
who sees only a small proportion of Chrysostom’s congregation being in a position to respond to his directive. therefore. On the other hand.90). in a position to acquire and read the commentaries on the sacred books written by their pastors. written at their desks and distributed to individual readers as an important contribution of their faith development. Reading Renunciation. while Diodore. as we shall see in Chapter Six. having come to faith in Christ the Lord from the nations. Sprenger.41 Chrysostom urges his (aﬄuent) congregation 37 The eight “sermons” (possibly in 386). and thus preached regularly to their ﬂock on the scriptural texts prescribed in a church lectionary. In this process. it is not homilies they have left us so much as formal commentaries on whole books of the Bible. and the sixty seven homilies (some time before Chrysostom’s move to Constantinople in 397).37 would be an exception to our ignorance in that regard. which yields us three sets of homilies on that book by Chrysostom. 41 So argues E. Diodori Tarsensis commentarii in psalmos. 38 Cf. to gain beneﬁt from them and provide spiritual nourishment for their soul. or are the “brethren. reading them aloud in the churches and keeping them at home” (H. the score or so of Homilies on the Statues in 387. his commentary on Zeph 1:4–6: “All of us. respectively. for instance.” édelfo¤. 49. from the Psalms and some other of the Writings. Diodore speaks of as the readers for whom he is writing his commentary on the Psalms simply the students in his asketerion?38 We know that for Theodore the Scriptures are for reading aloud in church and also being kept at home.31. prol. while she also contests the view that only .39 Chrysostom envisages his listeners returning home and “taking the sacred books in hand. (CCG 6. Mopsuestia and Cyrus. Did all members of these communities beneﬁt equally from this form of scriptural tradition of the faith? Were they all.12 chapter one Genesis in (the eight week) Lent. which we shall see in Chapter Four were readily available.4). N. received the Scriptures from (the apostles) and now enjoy them. Antiochene commentators broke the bread of the Word for their ﬂock from the Law and the Prophets. 39 Cf. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius in XII prophetas. these same Bible owners were in a position to acquire and read also written commentaries. But they were surely a minority of the community of the faithful. Asceticism and Scripture in Early Christianity. A. 40 Homily 2 and 10 on Gen (PG 53. Clark. if less widely from Israel’s sages. I Commentarii in psalmos I–L. Theodore and Theodoret exercized their pastoral ministry in the sees of Tarsus.”40 Presumably. 284).
such close attention and much instruction in salutary doctrines.43 On the other hand. seeing the clusters of the poor drawn up on all sides. H. anyone at all. makes you a father. no one seeing only a man declared blessed here should think that womankind is excluded from this beatitude. though not speciﬁcally of Antioch. Mayer. his usage gives the lie to this inclusive attitude. Omelie sull’ oscurità delle profezie. I mean. Zincone. the close of the ﬁfth sermon on Genesis (SC 433. limits literacy to 20 percent of Christians. From here we go oﬀ.” R.S. and masculine also in the Heb. daily assemblies—and the outcome of such devotion? Nil.42 If both poor and rich. with a glance at them as though they were pillars and not human bodies we pass them by pitilessly. when managed with moderation.” JTS N. 40 (1989) 504–506. ordinary audience. .270. in address.tradition of the faith in antioch 13 listening in church to his sermon on Genesis not to neglect the appeals of the poor waiting outside. constant praying. illiterate and well-educated attended the liturgy and proﬁted from the celebrant’s homilies. the case has been mounted that Antioch churches made particular provision for women worshipers.” But from that point on. Christ the Lord in delivering the beatitudes in the masculine did not exclude women from possessing virtue: his words include women. your friends. “Now. “John Chrysostom: extraordinary preacher.” 44 Cf. Chrysostom likewise thinks of the people left “hope-ﬁlled and secure” by the Lord in Ps 4:8 as including “your wives. 231. “The preacher’s audience AD 35–400.. but also from pejorative remarks about women and from citation of biblical texts inappropriate in the case of a mixed congregation or readership.” and he reminds his listeners to commentary on Ps 148:10 that “desire.2): “It is the time of fasting. 42 Cf.” ETL 76 (2000) 80. He observes. for example. MacMullen. Gamble. cites instances of patristic preachers’ congregations being aﬄuent. “Blessed the man” (énÆr in his LXX. though the latter predictably escapes him). 43 At the beginning of his Commentary on the Psalms Theodoret (perhaps taking a lead from Diodore’s similar comment on Ps 45:15) notes that Ps 1 begins. W.” 123. and substitution of this term where a biblical author may have had rather the non-committal term ênyrvpoi in mind. did they include both men and women? Today’s reader of Antiochene homilies and commentaries from the period under discussion can gain the impression that preacher and writer had men particularly in mind—not just from the frequent reference to males. Books and Readers in the Early Church. and that women are sometimes directly (if rhetorically?) addressed by Chrysostom. Did Jews occasionally attend Chryostom’s homilies? A reader of his ﬁrst homily on the obscurity of the Old Testament delivered in Antioch (S. 62–105) senses he is rather defensive because of the presence of “unfriendly” listeners. with a glance at them as though they were lifeless statues and not breathing human beings we hurry oﬀ home. “Who came to hear John Chrysostom preach? Recovering a late fourth century preacher’s audience.44 a small fraction of people in the Roman empire at this time were literate. êndrew (édelfo¤).
” 47 Cf. not part of the large series on the Psalter). comes our evidence of it in this period—and it is abundant. Finally he does return to Gen 1. indicating satisfaction with what was said.” Ephemerides Liturgicae 111 (1997) 108–109.” 49 (SC 433. where as bishop in Constantinople he congratulates the ﬁrst speaker. deﬁnitions. his homily on Isa 45:6–7. and unalterable doctrines’: Chrysostom on Jeremiah. Also the second homily on Ps 49:16 (PG 55. you burst into loud applause. his homily on Jer 10:23 (PG 56:153–62). and the architectural provision for preacher and congregation within. the homily on Isa 45:6–7 (PG 56. Scholars have combed the text of his homilies for evidence of the particular church in Antioch (and later in Constantinople) where each was delivered. 50 In Homily Six on Genesis Chrysostom is too dejected by his congregation’s (or the absent members’) inﬁdelity to the spirit of Lent to the extent of attending horse races (with all the associated lewdness) to continue with his commentary. and in course of delivery exempliﬁes the neglect of the very principles spelt out by him in the Jer homily cited in the previous footnote. .511–18. see below. Cf. “ ‘Norms. as has been noted.45 There is also evidence of Chrysostom as sole preacher.48 He can also chide them for inattention (like the celebrated rebuke for being distracted by the lamplighter in sermon four on Genesis)49 and even for absenting themselves to frequent places of enjoyment. For text of the rebuke. a reading apparently presented to him by the lectionary for the day. Cf. the commendation for my teaching: when I said yesterday. where Bishop Chrysostom is faced with a text for which he is unprepared.302. whether the Great Church of Constantine and Constantius.14 chapter one As the liturgy of the Eucharist celebrated in the churches of Antioch re-enacted the passion.3). Let each of you turn your home into a church. 48 In beginning the seventh sermon on Genesis (SC 433. From Chrysostom principally. and (after transfer as bishop to Constantinople) as second speaker. so the liturgy of the Word gave scope for the exercise of its homiletic tradition.141–52).238–40.1) Chrysostom refers to “the applause for my words. Hill.46 as opening speaker when Bishop Flavian is also present to preside and preach (as with the ﬁrst sermon on Genesis). though susceptible of development to rebut popular irresponsibility in quoting texts at random. Mayer. the Old Church. 46 Cf. death and resurrection of Jesus for the communities’ nourishment and development of the faith. 101.47 He can congratulate his audience on their attention and rapturous applause (if we are to believe the text we have). Cf.50 with which the city was liberally 45 The rebuke in Homily Six on Gen for his congregation’s inattention because rapt in “this wonderful ceiling” suggests Chrysostom is preaching on that occasion in the Great Church. like the horse races and theatre. “The dynamics of liturgical: Aspects of the interaction between St John Chrysostom and his audiences. the shrine of St Babylas or some other. p.
Lexicographi graeci I. On a more serene note he delivers ﬁve homilies on the nature of God (followed by another similar series in Constantinople) against the Anomeans or Eunomians. he can also compose treatises for individual or community reading. with his contemporary and bête noir in Constantinople. The pulpit of the churches of Antioch proved a means. 1. beyond occasionally making a passing reference to a rogues gallery of Christian heresiarchs. What also riles Chrysostom in Anomean teaching is their claim that God can be known by us as he knows himself—an infringment of divine transcendence that moves all the Antiochenes to lecture their listeners/readers on the dangers of anthropomorphisms in biblical texts. not only of commenting on the Scriptures. where Chrysostom is furious at the absence of some of the congregation at the races. but also of exercizing the community’s doctrinal and moral tradition. Leipzig. is an abrasive condemnation of such amusements. e. 1931. was made welcome at Constantinople by Chrysostom. 56 According to the tenth century Lexicon.55 Diodore likewise. reveal a much more literalistic and polemical commentator.56 those on the Psalms 51 SC 28 bis. 55 SC 272. like his appeal to Theodore to return to the ascetical life. Adler. though its fruits are not so celebrated or so well documented.” Other polemical homilies could be directed at Christians frequenting synagogues and celebrating Jewish feasts. His six homilies on the Hexameron. 52 PG 48.1379. Though it was his ability to move his congregation that won Chrysostom his sobriquet in the next century. A. 103 (cited by Quasten. but returned the compliment by exploiting the empress’s favor to expedite his friend’s exile and death.53 On the other hand.843–942.54 or his very celebrated treatise on the priesthood.1. of Suidas. Patrology 3. once attributed to Chrysostom (CPG 4194.277–316. presumably bishops Diodore. in addition to his sermons as a pastor and his commentaries on all the books of the Old Testament (we are told by Theodorus Lector in the sixth century. That sixth homily on Genesis. Savile applying the analogy of iron compared with gold (429). PG 56. bishop of Gabala near Laodicea. Theodore and Theodoret exercised a similar ministry.51 latterday Arians whose principal exponent Eunomius derided the talisman deﬁnition at Nicea of consubstantiality of Father and Son. 53 Severian. Severian of Gabala).tradition of the faith in antioch 15 endowed. 399). do not develop into sustained theological polemic (by comparison. . ed.429–500). 54 PG 47. ımooÊsiow—hence “An-omean.52 his biblical homilies. a theme he warmed to on many occasions.g.. however.
Devreesse. Heﬀer & Sons Ltd. Young remarks. composed a huge range of theological commentaries now lost. in introducing his Questions on Leviticus. fragments alone remaining of a celebrated treatise on the Incarnation. 1985 (SC 50). Commentary of Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist. Oxford: Clarendon. . The essential purpose was to initiate converts into a learning community. 3rd ed. 60 PG 75. however. dealing with the creed. 153. G. Essai sur Théodore de Mopsueste. he proudly lists his apologetical works (“writings against the Greeks.57 Theodoret attracted little of this animosity.64 Such a course in the faith for the recently evangelized in Antioch would have paralleled that given by Paul and Barnabas around the year 57 The Greek. Responsibility attributed to him for the doctrines of Nestorius ensured the destruction of this doctrinal output. Commentary of Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Nicene Creed. 58 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. 61 Ed. The ‘school’ character of early Christianity appears again in the development of catechetical lectures delivered through Lent . 63 A Wenger has edited eight of the homilies. and of course against soothsayers”)58 but omits mention of works on the Trinity59 and the Incarnation60 and his major Christological work. a special responsibility for pastors.63 as have sixteen Antioch catechetical homilies of Theodore in a Syriac version. 44–48. the Our Father and the eucharist for the beneﬁt of neophytes before and immediately after baptism. 59 PG 75. towards the close of his life. the Eranistes. Woodbrooke Studies 5. Cambridge: W. 243–44. . . Ettlinger. The catechetical tradition of Christianity.61 In short. 1933. the initiated in the churches under the jurisdiction of Antioch were well instructed in the faith by these pastors. delivered in Antioch in 388 and shortly after. Woodbrooke Studies 6. Syriac and Latin fragments appearing in various editions are summarized by R.. as it did most of his pupil Theodore’s. Mingana.1418–78. 1975.16 chapter one alone being fully extant). 1932.62 A dozen such catechetical homilies of Chrysostom have come to light. against the heresies. Huit catéchèses baptismales inédites. caters also to neophytes preparing for baptism at Easter. 64 A. H. and so his contributions to the doctrinal tradition of the faith have generally survived.1147–90. 62 Biblical Exegesis.
whereas preaching is proper to a few. when and to whom he delivered his lectures on the Psalms. the faith development of the community was the goal being sought in every case. remarking of it. it was but one of many traditions of the faith enjoyed by the faithful. . especially those engaged in preaching and teaching.”66 He sees this didactic role as distinct from the kerygmatic ministry discharged in the pulpit for the beneﬁt of the mature. Though we are unsure of where. In the latter. Yet it was the exercise of the ministry of the Word that earned one of them his sobriquet Golden Mouth and 65 66 67 68 On Ps 50:16 (PG 55.tradition of the faith in antioch 17 44. believers in Antioch received transmission of the faith through a range of ministries at the hands of zealous pastors. “and of the other forms of tradition of the faith. “Let the elders who have presided well be accorded double honor. whereas in the former everything is calculated not to punish the guilty but to correct the guilty through repentance. The classroom is more important than the courtroom. scholarship of one kind or another was not an end in itself. Biblical Exegesis. Reading of the Old Testament in Antioch in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries was not an isolated pastoral exercise. in commenting on 1 Tim 5:17. itself a more challenging ministry than administration of (some) sacraments: Preaching is more important than baptizing: baptizing is easy for those thought worthy of priesthood. “so praiseworthy is the profession of teaching.” For them. 185. Chrysostom speaks of the venue as a classroom. at all the stages of Christian initiation and maturation. Speaking of such pastors in the churches of both Antioch and Alexandria.65 Theodoret reserves a special commendation for those pastors who have the ability to teach the faithful.67 In short. PG 82. “All of them put their scholarly techniques to the service of preaching. who have received this good from a divine source. PG 82.233.”68 to which we may add. Frances Young says. thanks to their zealous pastors. didaskale›on.” he proceeds. those due for punishment pay the penalty.820. after all.250).
in the east and west generally. Chabot. 459). 4. read and commented on the Old Testament in particular according to the scriptural canon recognized in those churches. . Such commentary was shaped not only by Christian beliefs and a sense of pastoral responsibility for community faith formation in Antioch. though the other traditions would also repay further examination. under this diverse inﬂuence. but also by literary and rhetorical canons formulated by pagan authors as far aﬁeld as Athens and drilled into these Christian pastors by pagan rhetoricans. it appears in a text of a synod of the Eastern Syriac churches in 596 (cited from J. from the ﬁfth century. “The nickname was applied to several admired orators. B. to whom we owe much of our information and remains of Theodore’s work. and to John. Golden Mouth. by Mingana. 69 Of the term “Chrysostom” Kelly remarks.” The Syriac churches. We should now turn to examine the way the Antiochenes. Synodicon Orientale. applied to him the term Mephasqana from the sixth century.69 In this volume. as biblical commentary formed a major part of their pastoral ministry. the exegetical remains of these pastors bulk large. Fortunately.18 chapter one another The Interpreter. it is likewise the biblical tradition that is at the focus of attention. The Commentary of Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Nicene Creed.
in commentators’ eﬀorts to account for the acknowledged obscurity of the Old—that there is an assertion that the New is clearer because it “talks about more important things. reﬂects an underlying worldview. Nor is the crassness of its narratives.’ 1 And we shall see in Chapter Three the insistence of Antiochene commentators on the harmony and common origin of both testaments. The Canon of Scripture. F. for correcting. Their treatment of all these. Alternative terms like Hebrew Bible. They saw and appreciated in such texts the same human accents they would discern also in the humanity of Jesus. 74–76. in morality and the spiritual life. each of these testaments is referred to as diayÆkh. F. ‘and useful for teaching. we shall see. 170 (cf. both the Old and the New. for reproving. First Testament are not 2 1 . Bruce. Even though as we shall observe—for instance.29. Holy Writ includes both New and Old Testaments.’ according to blessed Paul.CHAPTER TWO THE CANON OF THE OLD TESTAMENT IN ANTIOCH For commentators on the Bible in our period. 3. Cf. No debate is therefore considered necessary in that period about any inadequacy of the term “Old Testament. of course. Diodore begins his work on the Psalter by referring to 2 Tim 3:16: ‘All Scripture is inspired by God. for training in righteousness. Jewish Scriptures. ca. 3 The term derives (indirectly from 2 Cor 3–4 and) in its ﬁrst extant usage by Christians in Melito of Sardis. To highlight its usefully moral character. 71).3). Homily 3 on Gen (PG 53. that led to complete dismissal by a Marcion or denial of reality to incidents like Hosea’s marriage by an Origen.3).”2 the massive investment in commentary on the Old by Antiochene pastors is evidence enough that it is in no sense thought to be dépassé. including the Old Testament. in the process of Christian salvation. Chrysostom in his ﬁrst homily on the subject (Omelie.”3 Its Jewish character Commentarii. suﬃcient to discourage total coverage by these commentators.
” he blurts out: But let them reap the reward of their own insanity. Von Rad. McDonald and J. L. 4 Sermon 2 on Genesis (SC 433. for our part. and with protection from it take good care of our own welfare. The use of the term canon to describe the scriptures was of Christian origin and not applied to classic Jewish literature. M. when in discussion of the meaning of Gen 1:26 Chrysostom is rebutting a Jewish interpretation. E. the ﬁrst application of the noun to the collection of holy scriptures appears in the last part of the fourth century and continued in common use from the time of Jerome. if the text is from them. where Chrysostom disputes a Jewish view that in the repeated mention of evening and morning in the opening verses of that chapter there is conﬁrmation that “the evening is the beginning of the following day. They betray no knowledge of use of the word kan≈n in the sense of a closed and now authoritative collection of sacred writings. both text and meaning belong to us. who have been fortunate enough to beneﬁt from the rays of the sun.20 chapter two is conceded.6 While Christian and Jewish readers may not agree on when the day begins.g.” 6 Homily 5 on Genesis (PG 53. A. The Canon Debate (2002). Modern commentators (e. he concedes the Jewish origin of the Old Testament while asserting the priority of a Christian hermeneutic: While the books are from them. place its wholesome doctrines within the recesses of our mind. Cf. the treasure of the books now belongs to us. Sanders. 50: “Although Origen used the term in an adjectival sense of scripturae canonicae (De princ.53. Introduction to the Old Testament as Scripture. G.5). should obey the teaching of Sacred Scripture.1). S. Childs. Christians are thought to have a claim on the writings without belittling their value. for both parties the whole of Scripture represents the kan≈n found in the Antioch commentaries. let us follow its kan≈n. IV 33).4 A. . avoiding whatever impairs the health of our soul and abstaining from all such harmful notions in the same way as we would noxious drugs. A Christian collection of Jewish books Antiochene commentators do not debate the contents of the canon of the Old Testament on which they are commenting. B. Speiser) diﬀer on the respective interpretations of this phraseology in Gen 1.188. a volume in which only Sanders uses such alternative terminology.. using the word simply in the sense of a norm. 5 Cf.5 In comment on Gen 1:13. even Jewish contributors employing the conventional terms Old and New Testament. We.
as will emerge in Chapter Five. which spread widely with the spread of bishops from Antioch. we are told by O. resulting from a major revision of Greek manuscripts at the end of the third century and the beginning of the fourth. TaNaK is not a term found in their mouths. A. Theodoret for all his knowledge of Judaism will pass in his Questions from Deuteronomy to Joshua without any acknowledgement of leaving one corpus for another or even any recognition of change of authorship. for our Antiochenes some biblical authors. if that term is not to be conﬁned to the Greek form developed in Alexandria—a question we shall examine in Chapter Four). Likewise in commenting on Joshua-2 Kings they give no hint that they recognize a corpus of Former Prophets (let alone a Deuteronomist. this Koine (or Byzantine) text.” 199: “Soon (in the early Church) the Jewish categories of Law and Prophets were forgotten and the whole religious literature received from Judaism was treated as one. On the testimony of Jerome. the Prophets. Aland.” While such is the usage in early Church creeds (“He has spoken through the prof∞tai:” DS 150).9 The commentators in referring 7 It is rather the term Octateuch that is known in the early Church. Eissfeldt. 9 Antioch commentators. the only analogue of the charism recognized by the commentators. B. For one thing. can be accorded instead a diﬀerent title.” they are not accustomed to speaking of a Pentateuch. nor do these Christian commentators in Antioch ever advert to any such. as their New Testament also contained distinctive readings. are using a text of the New Testament we know as the Koine text. Not that they were familiar with a Hebrew Bible and its traditional divisions. 51–71). was attributed to the scholar of Antioch. Aland.the canon of the old testament in antioch 21 of thought and living: it is simply the interpretation that diﬀers.8 though ambiguously the term can be used also speciﬁcally of the Latter Prophets (another unfamiliar term to them) in reference to prospective prophecy. An Introduction. all Old Testament authors are prof∞tai on the basis of their being divinely-inspired. hence the title to Diodore’s and Theodoret’s Quaestiones. of course). Lucian (cf. Sundberg. The Text of the New Testament.7 let alone Torah. C. presumably for not sharing to the same degree in the gift of inspiration. Though doubtless familiar from New Testament usage with the phrase “the Law and the Prophets. K. Such attribution has come under recent scrutiny. even in the course of Old Testament commentary. The Old Testament. There is no discrepancy in the contents. 156. as we shall see in Chapter Three. For them. 8 Cf. “The Protestant Old Testament canon. they had not suﬃcient Hebrew even to detect alphabetic structure of some psalms. In Antioch the Old Testament was read and commented on in the distinctive local Greek version (the Septuagint. such as sages and historians. Jerome’s testimony being .
see Sundberg’s article.” 152. the Old Testament thus is seen to be a Christian canon. such as the order of the Twelve Prophets. or Epiphanius likewise does by including in his New Testament canon Sirach and the Wisdom of Solomon excluded by other scholars from the Old. even though it diﬀers in various respects from the canons used in western Christian communities today. to the development of diﬀerent canons within Judaism. 70–80. They may not have been equally aware that some books occurred in their Old Testament in a diﬀerent order from that found elsewhere in the LXX. they never advert to it. Diodore refers to Genesis as Kosmopoi˝a and Theodore as Kt¤siw. of the Old Testament in use in their churches diﬀered from others. to amendments to Jewish lists such as Origen acknowledges in distinguishing between “their Scriptures” and “our Scriptures. The Antiochene commentators never advert.”10 the Antioch commentators seem rather now thought suspect. The Canon of Scripture. They do not advert. who had before them in working on Zechariah the commentary of the Alexandrian Didymus. 10 Sundberg. or collection of normative writings. If it is true that “the Church was forced to determine her Old Testament for herself. Ruﬁnus and Augustine. to discrepancies between Jewish canons. they are also supplied by Bruce. either. did not follow him in citing them. either. the Antioch text following the order of the Hebrew Bible. If they were aware that the canon. either. whose New Testament canon seems to have included The Shepherd of Hermas and the Epistle of Barnabas. Jerome. thus giving a skewed outline of the Antioch canon. Bruce proceeds to refer only to Theodore of the Antiochenes (“the most illustrious exponent of the exegetical school of Antioch”—that common misconception). For details of the views of these Fathers and councils. to current disagreements over canon on these lines occurring in the West between the likes of Hilary. too.” or Athanasius makes in admitting 2 Esdras to the canon and including under Jeremiah the books of Baruch and Lamentations and the Epistle of Jeremiah. . Perhaps they knew some books by diﬀerent titles. or to acceptance of a canon within the Church diﬀerent from one of these Jewish canons.22 chapter two in the course of their work to a copy of the Hexapla would be aware that their local text diﬀered at times from other forms of the LXX. Theodore and Theodoret. or to a ranking of books within the canon on the (supposed) basis of diﬀerences in language of composition. They never advert. or to Church councils ruling on the canon in our period. “The ‘Old Testament’: a Christian canon.
JSOT Supplement series 380. containing in its chs 3–14 the Apocalypse of Ezra (commonly called 4 Ezra. the Antioch Old Testament canon included books referred to today as deutero-canonical and apocryphal/pseudepigraphic: Sirach and the Wisdom of Solomon are 11 Commentarii. London-New York: T&T Clark. Diodore cites the story to support his view that the Psalms had to be collected anew in higgledy-piggledy fashion and that the psalm titles are not original. none of the commentators cite the text. as a work of the Spirit: Blessed Ezra.13 On the other hand. “this theory was widely accepted by Jews and Christians until the end of the nineteenth century. 6. remember. De Troyer and M. of course.32. White Crawford. . B. 51. is not conclusive evidence of absence. a Jewish work originally in Aramaic or Hebrew from the second century CE) giving a non-biblical account of the loss of the Jewish Scriptures under Manasseh and their recomposition by Ezra in a vision.” Chrysostom tells his congregation in 386. but Theodore’s reference to the story is more signiﬁcant: in comment on Ps 66:3 he cites from Josephus almost verbatim the text of Esth 8:14–17.the canon of the old testament in antioch 23 to think that their canon is Jewish in origin and—rightly—that all the books came to them from Judaism. V.11 Theodoret tells it to defend the inclusion in the canon of the Song. the blessed Fathers were aware of this in ranking it with the divine Scriptues. 2003. when he rewrote the book. J. an unlikely citation if his Bible contained that book.” 12 PG 81. Absence of evidence. so we claim. An Antioch canon A critical factor in the recognition of the canon of Antioch is the inclusion by commentators at both ends of our period of 2 Esdras (IV Esdras in the Vulgate). Introduction. According to Childs. 13 This is a signiﬁcant datum that might well have been included in the lengthy discussions (by K. The Church thus had a role in determining the canon in Theodoret’s thinking. “The books are from them. thought by some to be erotic. L. The Book of Esther in Modern Research. Greenspoon. Fox) of the canonicity of Esther in S. even the Greek “Atext” once thought to be a revision by Lucian. was ﬁlled with his grace.12 A notable omission from Antioch’s canon (as it missing also from Qumran) is any form of the book of Esther.
the end of our period. The greatest number of extant Antiochene exegetical works come from Theodoret. citing the report of Theodorus Lector in the sixth century. The appearance of the queen in Dan 5 would surely have evoked in Theodoret mention of Queen Vashti in Esther had his Old Testament included that book. At his death around 460. In his Questions 14 J. Patrology 3. of the Writings he left works on the Song of Songs.1 of the deuterocanonical story of Bel and the Dragon (but not Susanna. Proverbs and Ecclesiastes (as we mention in Chapter Six).24 chapter two freely cited. his Questions treat Chronicles as two books. while his text of Daniel (in the version of Theodotion) comprises chapters 1–12 plus v. as are Baruch and 1 & 2 Maccabees. Quasten. the two books of Chronicles. a local canon is surely imposing real. Theodoret. Lamentations and Daniel (a prophet in Theodoret’s view).” sofo¤. A canon within the canon If there is an oﬃcial and relatively extensive canon operating in Antioch. like other deutero-canonical and apocryphal books. his Jeremiah Commentary in the form we have it includes Baruch and Lamentations (but not the Epistle of Jeremiah). if generous.”14 and the Syriac catalogues of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries list a large number of such works by Theodore. 399. limits. the Psalter. if only because the most extant commentator. . Works that are more marginal to the canon. he had commented on Torah and Nebi"im (Former and Latter) of the Hebrew Bible (as well as Baruch as a codicil to Jeremiah). is seen to refer to such works (in addition to 2 Esdras) most often: to 1 Esdras three times and to 3 Maccabees. While the sapiential books are a conspicuous omission from this list (the sages classed by our commentators merely as “sages. less so Tobit and Judith. is it possible to discern “a canon within the canon”? Diodore is credited with commenting on “all the books of the Old Testament. so we may use him as a benchmark. as reference to them in the above commentaries is also relatively sparse. then. C. and of course they provide a unique patristic commentary on Ruth. Ruth. though this story is widely known by the Antiochenes). Chrysostom is credited with works in note form on Job. do not attract sustained attention from Theodoret. not prof∞tai).
15 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Reges et Paralipomena.15 The Antioch church certainly received from their pastors a comprehensive introduction to this canonical collection of biblical texts.” and his listing of his works in opening comment on Leviticus in his Questions on the Octateuch. 3. .the canon of the old testament in antioch 25 we gain from this ageing commentator a sense that he is struggling to leave to his Antiochene community a complete legacy by “making clear to the readers what requires clariﬁcation in an eﬀort not to leave incomplete” a coverage of vital elements in the scriptural canon known to them. if we may depend on his claim in 448 to have commented on “all the prophets. There is also a sense of a considered judgement in Theodoret’s not including the Gospels in his New Testament commentaries (Chrysostom already having left celebrated works on them). the psalter and the apostle.
433–37). . at least as far as their approach to the Psalms is concerned (their only common extant work). particularly Nestorius. John Chrysosotm and His Time 1.” HTR 81 (1988) 125–43. et Eutych. the master and the most devoted of his pupils. and reasons for attributing it to him are “insecure” (Quasten. Luther’s dismissal of him as “worth nothing in my opinion.” Certainly the latter paid his master that sincerest form of ﬂattery. it was for their eminence as biblical commentators that they gained particular recognition. 374) may be due to his views (and Antioch’s generally) on faith. Diodore was condemned at a synod in Constantinople in 499. 3. as outlined in Chapters Nine and Ten below. in the sixth century. and Theodore’s works at the ﬁfth ecumenical council in 553 (DS 425–26. 39 (PG 82. has nothing but praise for them both. As to his doctrinal probity. J.1277). although the principal Antiochene pastors of the fourth and ﬁfth centuries ministered to their ﬂock also as celebrants. 9 (PG 86. 2 In the ( jaundiced) view of Leontius of Byzantium. just as their ﬂock expected this of them. imitation. Diodore was Theodore’s “father and leader in vice and impiety. catechists. Cf. Thompson. the year of Theodore’s death.CHAPTER THREE ANTIOCH’S CONCEPT OF SCRIPTURAL REVELATION Signiﬁcance was found in our ﬁrst chapter in the fact that.1364).3 The education they had received in Antioch. we noted. Theodoret of Cyrus. cf. teachers. only a foolish babbler” (so C. It was for his homiletic skills that Calvin admired him. licet secundo gradu: woman as the image of God according to John Calvin. where no doctrinal issues are developed. Baur. Church History 5. on the other hand. was on reading and commenting on the sacred text. L.1437–52). while soundly 1 Cyril of Alexandria. Hill. theologians and moral guides.” 3 The so-called Liturgy of St John Chrysostom derives from a later period than the preacher of Antioch. later ages raised no quibble. the criticism and condemnation heaped on them that resulted in the consignment of their works to the ﬂames was primarily directed at theological positions which they were reputed to have held and transmitted to other notorious theologians. “His Master’s Voice: Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Psalms.2 as well as John Chrysostom and later Theodoret. grace and human eﬀort. had assailed both men in his Contra Diodorum et Theodorum (PG 76. “Creata ad imaginem Dei.1 The particular pastoral focus of these men. 472). who became bishop in Constantinople in 428. Contra Nestor. And though the bulk of such commentary has been lost in the case of Diodore and Theodore. for example. Patrology 3.
Before turning to study their works. we saw). whether visionary or recorder: The prophet’s meaning is.”4 and thus placed an emphasis on historical events. he poses the question already posed by Theodore open before him as to the role of a prophet. these commentators develop a profound theology of the revealing Word. then. referring to the impulse Wallace-Hadrill. the divine revelation that is mediated to humankind in the Old Testament is generally referred to by these commentators as coming via “the divine Scripture(s). Christian Antioch.28 chapter three rhetorical. the Scriptures and the humanity of Christ. as shall be seen below in Chapter Eight. or statement. including their Old Testament works. the latter only ﬁve. or oracle. therefore. he also speaks of “Bible/book(s).” lÒgow/lÒgoi/lÒgioi/lÒgia. 96. exemplify this emphasis. less frequently “the Word/words.” GrafÆ/Grafa¤. when Theodoret comes to the vision received by Zechariah on “the twenty fourth day of the twelfth month of Shebat in the second year of Darius” (Zech 1:7). by word. if also an obscure Word. he received once again the impulse of divine grace. Revelation in word and writing Predictably. “Chrysostom’s terminology for the inspired Word.” bibl¤on/bibl¤a. was philosophical if at all—and Aristotelian only—in the sense that it shared that philosopher’s “concentration of mind upon observable facts.” 5 4 . 102. In this month. Yet one gains the impression that the commentators do think of revelation primarily in terms of Holy Writ. when the second year had not yet expired. and not peculiar to Antioch. even in the case of the prophets. In the process of distinguishing this divine inﬂuence from that predicated of seers by classical authors (in whom they are well versed. A. See Hill. three times. or hand. that is relevant to the Old Testament as well as to the New. we should examine their understanding of the way God communicates with his people through the biblical authors and their works. These pastors’ biblical commentaries.5 It is doubtless a conventional and widespread terminology. This is the usage also of a preacher like Chrysostom: in his Genesis homilies the former two terms occur 369 times.
Beyond the Written Word. where the congregation are introduced to the inspired message in the context of a Liturgy of the Word by readings from a lector and a homily from the homilist. 142. A. “From Good News to Holy Writ. preferring “raisonnable:” ”Le mot rationaliste ne conviendrait ici. he left it for us in writing in the following terms. Cf. Devreesse.” 991. had raised the same question. to whom they both had access. conducting this in particular also for the beneﬁt of the listeners. “Diodore. The share of the text in the saving purpose of the Word. and of the role played by mere compilers. Le commentaire de Théodore de Mopsueste sur les psaumes.” 7 6 . despite the credal article of the council of 381.1877. not songs to be sung.” 9 R. Hill. but as in the case of Zechariah Theodore allows for both “listeners” and “readers” of David in introducing Ps 33. as we shall see in Chapter Seven. An accent on the orality of biblical revelation would be expected to occur rather in the statement of a preacher in church. Oral Aspects of Scripture in the History of Religions. “He has spoken through the inspired authors. The quotations in English of the Antioch Fathers in this volume are translations by R.8 For Diodore the Psalms are primarily a text to be read for our instruction (he begins his preface by citing 1 Tim 3:16–17). that (David) moves from development of a theme to catechetical exhortation. Enlightened by it. Graham.10 will also raise the question of the authorship of works attributed to composers like David.9 Diodore. This is what we should consider most of all in the psalms. on the one hand. tÚ lal∞sai. Hill. 10 Gustave Bardy. His dutiful pupil can be quoted to the same eﬀect. then. 1987. C. the biblical authors themselves are primarily written rather than oral transmitters of the revealing word. while on the other hand it behoves us attend also to the other aspects which he employed with the readers’ beneﬁt in mind. Though Chrysostom adopts the conventional terminology of “Scripture. The result is that it is necessary for us to recognise the themes with a view to knowledge of the psalms’ force. and engaging in some discernment.” ≤ GrafÆ. DS 150. will baulk at the use of this term. it can suit his purposes to emphasize the orality of the message and the listeners’ degree of readiness PG 81. 8 W.”6 Didymus in Alexandria. For these Fathers. rationalist as he may be.”7 they were not as convinced of “the fundamental orality of Scripture” as are some modern scholars. ix. Cambridge: CUP.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation 29 of divine grace.
12 The listeners’ “limitations. that a text. he says. the congregation should attend carefully: The mouths of the inspired authors are the mouth of God. becomes diﬃcult through the inexperience of the listeners. hinder the process of reception: they are either unaccustomed to the sublimity of the message or even resistant to it. and inquiring who Melchizedek was. you see. to whom is it comprehensible? It is diﬃcult for me. . being snatched up to the third heaven? If it is diﬃcult for you.11 As a corollary. I shall cite to you Paul as witness: after saying Christ became a high priest in the order of Melchizedek. . 64–66.1. he is saying.” ésy°neia. It is possible. “Diﬃcult to interpret. in his ﬁrst homily on the obscurity of the Old Testament. In his six homilies on Isaiah 6 (In Oziam).” attributing the cause of its lengthiness and diﬃculty to the hardness of hearing. See Hill. Consequently. what are you saying? Is it diﬃcult for you with your spiritual wisdom. “St John Chrysostom as biblical commentator: Six homilies on Isaiah 6.” Do you see that it was not the nature of the text but the inexperience of the listeners that made diﬃcult what was not diﬃcult? Not only diﬃcult.” 12 Omelie. either . O blessed Paul. however: the same factor renders the short long— hence his saying it was not only diﬃcult to interpret but also “lengthy. such a mouth would say nothing idly—so let us not be idle in our listening. of which the opening verses were read out to the congregation and then commented on by himself as preacher. he went on. Pay precise attention.2). after all. having heard words beyond description. 11 Homily Two In Oziam (SC 277. “Because you are hard of hearing. but from the limitations of the listeners (t«n ékoÊntvn): after saying. however: the reading out of the Scriptures is the opening of the heavens. Chrysostom emphasizes both the orality of the prophet’s message and the awesome revelation it contains.30 chapter three to receive it. “What I have to say to you is lengthy and diﬃcult to interpret” (Heb 5:11). simple by nature.88. not from an innate diﬃculty.” he added. . Chrysostom cites as one reason for such ésãfeia the listeners’ inexperience and even resistance.
in commentary on the term “fountains of Israel” in Ps 68:26 Theodoret remarks. teaches us . God’s revelation reaches its intended beneﬁciaries in a process and through agents and compositions that are all indebted to the inspiration of God/the Spirit.4).16 13 14 15 16 Hom. but .antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation B. 7 on Gen 1:20 (PG 53. because from them we oﬀer hymn singing to God. Hom. . and their works consequently are also inspired. they are still authors in receipt of divine inspiration. on Ps 4:8 (PG 55. however. in addition to the Old Testament books (profhtiko¤) he regaled us also with the apostolic (épostolika¤) fountains.72.14 But if you do not believe these Old Testament authors (prof∞tai). a term not applicable to New Testament authors.65.57. Chrysostom exploits the range of expressions available from the common deposit: The blessed Moses.15 In so far as they are inspired. . gives voice through most blessed David to his own response to our suﬀerings so that through it the suﬀerers may be cured. Authors and works divinely-inspired 31 Faulty reception of revelation in this case. Hom.13 (The Anthropomorphites) are not only unwilling to get any beneﬁt from the teaching of the inspired (yeÒpneustai) Scriptures. Chrysostom is saying. From the outset of his Psalms Commentary. 8 on Gen 1:26 (PG 53. the Old Testament authors are prof∞tai. épostoliko¤.3). it would be right for the inspired books of the Old Testament (profhtiko¤) to be called fountains of Israel. Even if it is also due to the words of the authors. as he will go on to concede of some instances. we can supply clear unmistakable signs which demonstrate above all that they were inspired (yeÒpneustoi) and that they told us nothing on their own account but with the inspiration (§pne›n) coming from that divine love which is higher than the heavens.11). PG 80.1392–93. as is the terminology they employ. . . who guides all human aﬀairs. is primarily the fault of the listeners to the words of the authors. inspired (§nhxoÊmenow) by the divine Spirit. Now. but would derive great harm from it. Diodore insists on this fact: The Holy Spirit. It is a conviction that is shared by Antioch with all other schools. .
C.” suggrafeÊw or ﬂstoriografÒw— not that they (or the sages) are bereft of divine guidance.513): “The Scriptures are written and produced by the Holy Spirit. they are not felt to be in such need of the special divine assistance that their less enlightened predecessors required. however. It is not accorded to the sages.32 chapter three The distinction does not. composing in the wake of the Incarnation. 7 (CCL 76. When it comes to the composers responsible for the historical books. Mantic possession or the Spirit’s guidance? This doctrine expounded by the Antiochenes of the fact of divine inspiration of the biblical authors in speaking or writing. as John N. “Few. it belongs to prophets to foretell the future. Moses and David as authors of Pentateuch and Psalms are likewise accorded it on the basis of divine inspiration. they are not regarded as prof∞tai (even if styled Former Prophets in the Hebrew Bible—terminology unfamiliar to the Antiochenes. it is not only the Latter Prophets of the Hebrew Bible who are entitled to the term profÆthw. 36 (PG 6. Theodoret is clear about it in beginning his Questions (which immediately pass into mere commentary) on Chronicles: The composition of the book was done after the captivity: anyone composing a history mentions not later events but earlier or contemporary ones. D. only the term sofÒw is appropriate.” 18 17 . Cf.385): “When you hear the expression of the prophets spoken in their own name. Antiochenes like Theodoret refer to composers like the Deuteronomist and the Chronicler as “historians.”17 So. Apology I. Kelly observes. is not novel. it would seem. on the other hand imply that inspiration is denied to New Testament authors. Justin. however. if any.18 But there is not such unanimity on the manner on this inspiration. In Mich. annalists. it was held by other Fathers of east and west. presumably because sapiential material is thought to be (as it claims) the fruit of human experience. of the fathers seem to have Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Reges et Paralipomena. Clearly. 247.” Jerome. 2. It is just that. do not think they are spoken by the inspired men themselves but by the Word of God moving them. of course). with their notion of prophecy as exclusively prospective. but that they share to a lesser degree in the charism of inspiration.
Habakkuk and Malachi. Fortunately.” lambãnv. and thus accepts—against the principles of his school—the notion of prophetic inspiration as ecstatic possession.3. as in his commentary on the Twelve Prophets he comes upon the term for “oracle.” l∞mma. “divinely-possessed. as has been said. . I tell of my works to the king. It is not a notion to which Antioch would be expected to warm. PG 29. with its accent both on Aristotle’s “observable facts” and on the human element in moral accountability. He comments.” an understanding of inspiration reminiscent of Plato’s accounts of the pagan seers.20 conveying to us most dramatically the workings of the charism of inspiration. possessed by a demon who supersedes the human faculties. since it was possible for them in their minds to be quite removed from their normal condition and thus capable of devoting themselves to the contemplation of what was revealed. Scripture in the Light of Language and Literature. for a hapax legomenon in the Hebrew.” §jereÊgomai. at the opening of Deutero-Zechariah (9:1) as well as Nahum. L.”19 The prophets. where the opening to Ps 45 (in the LXX. with Didymus open before him. It was by ecstasy. 63.22 19 20 21 22 Early Christian Doctrines. are the prime analogues of biblical authors divinely-inspired. mãnteiw. my tongue the pen of a rapid scribe”) prompted the commentators to develop their thinking on the manner of inspiration of the biblical author. Alonso-Schökel. all Antiochenes and many others of the Greek (and Latin) Fathers have left us commentaries on the Psalter. the other Antiochenes are not extant. 239. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius in XII prophetas. In his commentary on Zechariah (on which the ﬁve books of Origen’s earlier partial treatment have been lost). 92.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation 33 tried to probe the deeper problems raised by their doctrine of inspiration. He correctly relates it to the verb “seize. Didymus speaks repeatedly of this prophet as yeolhmptoÊmenow. The term “belch. led a Cappadocian like Basil to see a suggestion of compulsion and lack of control by the author under the inﬂuence of the Spirit.”21 Theodoret will be less enthusiastic about the idea when he comes to The Twelve with his eye on Didymus and Theodore. that in all likelihood they all received the knowledge of things beyond description. “My heart belched a good word. therefore. The Inspired Word.393. Only Theodore will toy with it.
as it were with ink. the latter remains in control as far as this does not impugn divine transcendence: When he said. by contrast.183–84.’ But at once he is alarmed by the similarity of the notion to Plato’s thinking on the pagan seers. evidently had Didymus and Basil and not the Antiochenes in mind in attributing to the Fathers generally “the prevalence of a concept of divine authorship that could lead to a practical forgetting of the claims of human authorship. Biblical Inspiration. I utter the psalm from the depths of my mind.”24 Chrysostom would have been aware that Diodore had set the parameters for any such discussion on the respective roles of the Spirit and the human author. PG 55.26 Apology 22C. Bruce Vawter. . and from there allows the tongue to speak loud and clear and to formulate the sayings in letters and articulate them distinctly for those who are willing to receive the beneﬁt which stems from them. such and such a speech we utter when we want to. to respond to the movement of grace in the way a pen responds to the leading thought of a ﬂuent writer. Chrysostom in his didaskale›on at ﬁrst acquiesces: We do not belch when we choose to. The psalmist accordingly shows that what he says is not the result of human eﬀort but of divine inspiration (§p¤pnoia) guiding him (kine›n).25 While contributing a further element to the discussion. For the master. 282. and does this by calling his inspired authorship ‘belching.23 which he rejects: The Holy Spirit. Theodore in this case typically respects his master’s accent on the human element: The Spirit. being kindly and beneﬁcent in his actions.” 25 Commentarii. 26 Le commentaire. does not act like that: he allows the heart to know what is being said. either speaking or holding it in. ﬁlls.1. he means. the human heart with the perceptions of revelation. he renders those who receive him sharers in his purposes. belching is not like that. I adjust my tongue. to the extent that this is possible. and reveals the things that are said with the understanding of the authors. . just like a perfect writer.34 chapter three Perhaps persuaded by the argument of such predecessors. namely. 24 23 . 38. Meno 99D. 269. . ink to ﬁll the pen (“the perceptions of revelation with which the Spirit ﬁlls the human heart”).
workmanlike labor that can be worked at. “my deeds.861.1. for a time carried away.”28 D. apparently delivered in Antioch outside the larger series of Psalm homilies (PG 55. After all. “It is the role of an inspired composer to make his tongue available to the grace of the Spirit. It was enough that the text enjoyed divine authentication: despite the departure of the authors. a builder to build a house. Chrysostom seizes upon the reply of Abraham to the rich man in Hades in the parable in Luke 16:29: “They have Moses and the prophets.” 28 PG 80. in another manuscript. “I tell of my works to the king”—or. and through the lifeless image he imagines him. in fact. . the Scriptures are living images of them. having in them images not of their bodies but of their souls. has come to heel: biblical composition is deliberate.2).” Antioch’s accents on biblical revelation have prevailed. In an isolated homily on Ps 146. much more do we enjoy the communion of the saints through the divine Scriptures. but in their writings they had them. Cf. Moses and all the prophets were long dead in the body. a shipwright to build a ship. “Psalm 45: a locus classicus for patristic thinking on biblical inspiration.” What works are referred to? Inspired composition (profhte¤a). he went even further in maintaining Antiochene emphasis on authorial activity. Hill. where the activity of the Spirit is anything but that spontaneous irruption denoted before by “belching.29 27 PG 55. 29 Homily on Ps 146:1.27 The preacher. then.521. the words spoken by them being images of their very souls.184. the biblical authors and the biblical text were highly esteemed by Antiochene readers and commentators.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation 35 Chrysostom had no choice but to acquiesce. if a person sets up a lifeless image of son or dear one and thinks that person. so it is an inspired composer’s job to produce inspired composition. is present. As it is the work of a smith to make a tool. Theodoret will not undermine them in later observing in his preface to the Psalter.” Actually. though dead. even if no philosophical school lay explicitly behind their commitment. A theology of the revealing Word As inspired transmitters in word and writing of divine revelation.
Hill. he was silent and remained hidden .174. Chrysostom takes issue with the kataphatic theology of the Anomeans. “The word was precious at that time. that the heights of Antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation are reached.” Singling out as a ﬁgure of anomean temerity the King Uzziah of 2 Chr 26 who presumed to usurp high priestly functions and was punished with leprosy. that is.’” . Since they allowed him that liberty. one that can be withdrawn or suspended. in which the Word comes clothed in the human limitations which the Word assumed in the Incarnation. sugkatãbasiw—a loving gesture. who presume where presumption is illicit. You refuse? I shall have no dealings with you. either. the Spirit’s grace not being active in the case of unclean people. therefore. and there was no inspired utterance” (1 Sam 3:1). The Scriptures. he brought the charism of inspiration to a halt. a communication which can be withheld. like the Incarnation. It is when the Old Testament is seen as one further instance of divine love for humankind. For him the biblical authors are the means by which communication (ımil¤a) with God occurs. In his six homilies on Isaiah 6. Yet this presentation of the Scriptures as living images of the biblical authors is by no means Antioch’s most telling theological insight. . “St John Chrysostom’s teaching on inspiration in ‘Six Homilies on Isaiah. .36 chapter three The reverence shown the Scriptures in eastern liturgies reﬂects the same esteem.6). Hence he kept his distance. come to us as a gesture of divine considerateness. Cf. “those who pry into the ineﬀable and blessed nature. however. Chrysostom expresses his own deep appreciation of scriptural koinvn¤a. and (with a loose application of the situation obtaining rather in the time of Eli) he maintains that the people’s unwillingness on that occasion to expel the leprous Uzziah resulted in such an interruption of this scriptural communication. nothing to suggest “con- 30 Homily 4 In Oziam (SC 277. God was not speaking through the inspired authors: the Spirit through whom they made utterance was not inspiring them since they kept the unclean one. with nothing patronizing about it. he did not reveal himself to the inspired authors.30 The divine ımil¤a occurring in scriptural discourse is a gift. God turned away from them and put a stop to the charism of inspiration (profhte¤a)—and rightly so: in return for their breaking his law and being reluctant to expel the unclean one.
Vawter. Giovanni Crisostomo. after all.” B. Biblical Inspiration. 40. to be fed at the breast.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation 37 descension” (though the term is often by a lazy calque thus rendered into English and other languages). at the extent of his considerateness. J. . dearly beloved. rather. Perhaps Chrysostom’s most profound explication of the relation between scriptural considerateness. Napier NZ (private printing). that the truth of the divine plan might be given credence 31 Such is the version suggested by M. 1948 (where “accuracy” also inadequately—and commonly—renders a key Antiochene term ékr¤beia). Flanagan. “Johannes Chrysostomus. Leroux. “I multiplied visions and took various likenesses in the works of the inspired authors” (Hos 12:10). he came in human form as the good man’s guest in the company of the angels.” not negating the profundity of the thought). “ ‘Israel’ means seeing God. not in appearance or in seeming. Fabbi. and the (other) Incarnation of the Word occurs in his commentary in his Genesis homilies.-M.” 121. in comparing the term to Origen’s sumperiforã. remember that with the patriarchs as well. to become an infant. He comments on the vision accorded Jacob in his wrestling with the heavenly being and the consequent bestowal of the name Israel in 32:28 (the solecism in his grave remark. At that time. and its cognate manifestation also in the Incarnation. as he says himself through the inspired authors. F. when he was sitting by the oak tree. St John Chrysostom’s Doctrine of Condescension and Accuracy in the Scriptures. makes it worth quoting at length. “El Crisóstomo y su visión de la escritura en la exposición homilética del Génesis. “La ‘condiscendenza’ divina nell’ ispirazione biblica secondo S. But when he deigned to take on the form of a slave and receive our ﬁrst-fruits. He brought himself to undergo all our experiences. but in reality. to be wrapped in swaddling clothes. and to undergo everything for this purpose.” A monograph is being prepared on the term by David Rylaarsdam.” F. to be born of a woman.31 The Incarnation. does not represent a patronizing gesture on God’s part towards human beings—only love and concern. since it was the very early stages. H. Do you see how the Lord shows considerateness for our human limitations in all he does and in arranging everything in a way that gives evidence of his characteristic love? Don’t be surprised. both in God’s dealings with the patriarchs and in the Scriptures. he donned our ﬂesh. however. giving us a premonition from on high at the beginning that he would one day take human form to liberate all human nature by this means from the tyranny of the devil and lead us to salvation. Asensio does better in his article. sugkatãbasiw. where the term is rendered “Herablassung. The continuing accent in this passage on considerateness. he appeared to each of them in the guise of an apparition.
when in his LXX text of Jer 9:9 the Lord says. the Scriptures. Publ. Wright. generally in reference to the allowance made for human weakness (in provisions of the Law. nor would he have died.. Neuser. “Calvin’s accommodating God. if he had not taken on our ﬂesh in reality. 32 Homily 58 on Gen (PG 54.3). The theological matrix. 33 Cf. 42: “The great principle expressed by the word synkatabasis is of deep and wide application. in documenting his theme of sugkatãbasiw. B. As in the historical Incarnation the Eternal Word became ﬂesh. the humanity of Jesus. Divino Aﬄante Spiritu.509–510. After all. Chase. Sixth International Congress on Calvin Research. AAS 35 (1943) 316. soteriology—all betraying on their part that “concentration of mind upon observable facts” thought to be in some sense Aristotelian. Calvin’s indebtedness to Chryostom’s thinking is outlined by D. But if he had not risen. is not so positive about the eﬀect of his theology of the Word (Golden Mouth. e. H. .34 In other Antiochene commentators.” 34 Cf. H. the formulation of Chrysostom’s thought in 1887 by F. been buried.g. Chrysosom’s biographer Kelly. Chrysostom. 3–19. Calvinus Sincerioris Religionis Vindex.” in W. Armstrong. and by the Second Vatican Council in 1965 in its Dei Verbum #11. . the whole purpose of the divine plan would have been thwarted. the notion of divine considerateness demonstrated in Old Testament texts is found. and risen again. 1997.” The claim is not documented. eds. A Study in the History of Biblical Interpretation. Kirksville MO: Sixteenth Cent. however. Theodoret comments. Do you see into what extreme absurdity those people fall who are unwilling to take their cue from the norm of Sacred Scripture but rather have complete conﬁdence in their own reasoning?32 In this extended meditation the preacher. “Shall my soul not be avenged on such a people?”. Journ. owes nothing to the philosopher. moves from the Scriptures to the patriarchs and then to a sustained accent on the humanity of the Word incarnate.38 chapter three and the mouths of heretics be stopped . This is but one of dozens of instances where Chrysostom develops the notion in reference to Old Testament texts. though in one case approximating to Chrysostom’s notion of the divinely-ordained style of scriptural discourse. the citation of Chrysostom to this eﬀect by Pope Pius XII in his 1943 encyclical letter on biblical studies. F. . G. 95): “This assumption (of divine inspiration) eﬀectively blocked any open-minded examination of the Bible. not surprisingly. it has received ecclesiastical endorsement in more recent times. too. AAS 58 (1966) 824. neither would he have been cruciﬁed.33 In the process he demonstrates the typically Antiochene Weltanschauung incorporating salvation history. Theodoret in particular thinks in these terms.). so in the Bible the glory of God veils itself in the ﬂeshly garments of human thought and human language. on the other hand.
and—eminently—that the prime analogue of divine considerateness is that (other) Incarnation of the Word in the person of Jesus. It is a formulation of the incarnational principle of which Chrysostom would have been proud. Hill. that its purpose is to lead humankind from material things upward to spiritual realities. being simple.’ ” 35 . “On looking again at synkatabasis.” 37 Cf. that while the concern in such acts of considerateness is not primarily with the dignity proper to God. ékr¤beia.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation 39 He used the phrase my soul in human fashion: the divine is not composed of body and soul. PG 81. that the concreteness (paxÊthw) of the language is required by the materialism of the listener/reader. in modo recipientis recipitur. E.37 The considerateness that marked God’s dealing with humankind provided for a gradual revelation of himself. His words are adjusted to our capacity to receive. it lies behind their constant insistence on the danger of misconstruing anthropomorphisms in the text and the need to respond to the precision.561.35 The principle thus formulated picks up but one of the many that Chrysostom in one place or another extrapolates from the rich notion of scriptural sugkatãbasiw—that it is always a manifestation of divine filanyrvp¤a. that in Scripture God uses simple ways of speech to accommodate our limitations. and which the scholastic theologians will adopt in the form. of the text with a like precision in the commentator. An obscure revelation It is quite consistent with this acknowledgement and appreciation of God’s loving gesture of considerateness in the language and literature of the Old Testament that the Antiochenes admitted as well its obscurity to reader/listener and commentator—a feature that preoccupied others as well. 36 Cf. “Origène et les interprétations patristiques grecques de l’obscurité biblique. that it was particularly necessary in the early stages of revelation history. We shall see both these dictates at work in the Antiochenes’ approach to the task of commentary in Chapter Seven. “Le omelie di Giovanni Crisostomo ‘De prophetiarum obscuritate.36 Unspoken though this rich concept of scriptural revelation generally is in Antiochene commentators on the Old Testament.” Zincone. Harl. we should not remain at the level of banal vocabulary or think of God in human terms. M. lacking composition and form. Quidquid recipitur.
4). Chrysostom says. Diodore in reference to Ps 47:7 had warned against understanding the thought “superﬁcially and at the level of the lips alone” (Commentarii.” Cf.” as he says of his approach to the Song of Songs.41 These commentators came to their task with a less than perfect preparation and without some skills necessary for exegesis of obscure material. 40 On 4:12 (PG 81.” Of Ps 118. 304. whereas Paul and John. taking over from Moses. whose instinct was to focus on veriﬁable facts and who were less interested in arcane speculation.” 39 38 . he taught his listeners the elements.39 “by the grace of God to bring clarity. let us rejoice and be glad in it. full of “riddles. Hill. on the contrary.3). must address ourselves to the whole psalm. the apocalyptic of Joel and Zechariah also bewildered himself and Homily 2 on Gen 1:1 (PG 53.40 Chrysostom and Theodoret both admit that many people recited or sang the Psalms without understanding them. “This is the day the Lord has made. “We. unfamiliar with apocalyptic. It is understandable that Theodoret. Necessary linguistic and paleographical attainments were often not part of their formation. adding.” or put another way. nor was a familiarity with some literary genres.24. could at that later stage transmit more developed notions.29. as Theodore says in beginning commentary on Haggai. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. 41 In his didaskale›on Chrysostom regrets of Ps 141 that “those singing it daily and uttering the words by mouth do not inquire about the force of the ideas underlying the words.” that was sung at Easter by the congregation in keeping with an ancient prescription. or at least no more than the responsorium. They were therefore not always well prepared for the further task of interpreting biblical texts that were inadequately critiqued (as we shall see in Chapters 6 & 8). it was v. sung by the congregation in the liturgy.212). which he took to be a statement of contemporary monarchies and a prophecy of future events.” aﬁn¤gmata. The task was. “to bring obscurity to clarity as far as possible. ÍpakoÆ. a challenge awaited the commentator on Old Testament texts to Antioch congregations/readers. would ﬁnd the book of Daniel. “Psalm 41(42): a classic text for Antiochene spirituality.38 However convincing the rationale.” and Theodoret in the preface to his Commentary on the Psalter hopes that the faithful “may sing its melodies and at the same time recognize the sense of the words they sing.40 chapter three Chrysostom in his Genesis homilies had developed a rationale for this progress from obscurity to clarity: When Moses in the beginning took on the instruction of mankind.
3. that they have this character.” 5. Chrysostom chose to address it formally (if not quite logically) in two homilies in Antioch. 74–76. we have learnt it by experience. Ezekiel and some of The Twelve. someone will ask.” 431–34. R. however. Hence Theodoret’s approach to Daniel and apocalyptic passages like chapters 38–39 in Ezekiel.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation 41 Theodore. composed around 433). resembles riddles (aﬂn¤gmata). . Hanson. Brian E. Though appreciative of the Pax Romana that was evidently still in force at this stage (the Daniel Commentary his second work. whereas the New is clearer and easier. The problem of the obscurity of Old Testament texts. Daley. apart from the fact that the New talks about more important things. and its books are hard to grasp. as it had Didymus before them. P. C. about the kingdom of heaven.” 44 Omelie. but predictably resolved it diﬀerently. as we saw above in his citing “Paul” in Heb 5:11 about Melchizedek.42 Antioch shared with Alexandria the problem of biblical eschatology. the poverty gripping most people and all the other things we observe happening every day. Being unable to subscribe either to a naive millenarianism or to Origen’s alternative of allegorizing eschatological language into the Christian’s spiritual experience. the imposition of taxes. there is much diﬃculty in it. Taking the fourth beast in Dan 7 to be the Roman empire. Theodoret understandably was not fully enamored of other aspects of Roman rule. in fact. “Biblical exegesis in the early Church. he maintains. resurrection of bodies and ineﬀable things that also surpass human understanding? So what is the reason why Old Testament works are obscure?44 42 PG 81. speaks of “a ‘taming’ of apocalyptic in order to integrate it into a larger picture of a Christian world order. beginning with the inexperience or even obduracy of the listeners/readers.43 Antioch tended in some way to historicize it. 43 Cf. the problem lies deeper than that. Theodoret admits the prophecy of it in the Old Testament to be less clear than his actual experience: While people in olden times came to know this in riddles. The Old Testament. witnessing the outcome of the prophecy.1429. That is only a subjective reason. went beyond the apocalyptic genre found in Daniel. however. a ‘history of salvation’ culminating in the redeeemed life of the disciples of the risen Christ. Why is it. “Apocalypticism in early Christian theology.
how it is not possible to transfer the clarity naturally contained in the words when moving to another language. even if these “surpass human understanding” (hardly clinching proof of greater clarity).245. 114–16. Omelie.45 By way of proof he cites the treatment Jeremiah received for announcing to the court of Jehoiakim the impending catastrophe at the hands of the Babylonians as punishment for Jewish inﬁdelity ( Jer 36).2.3.1).” Chrysostom says. the fact of its being available to Antioch readers only in translation. In this second homily the preacher ﬁnally tires of the theme of obscurity. Hill.42 chapter three There lies the objective reason that goes to the essence: the superiority of New Testament doctrines. inspired though their Old Testament text assuredly was (and even its translation). In addition. That is to say. Everyone versed in many languages is aware of this. it was written originally in the Hebrew tongue. whereas we received it in the language of the Greeks. ensuring by the obscurity of the reports the safety of the reporters. We do not have the Old Testament written for us in our native tongue: while it was composed in one language. with which the second homily begins. and whenever a language is rendered into another language.” 47 Chrysostom at this point proceeds to refer to the translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek. Paul’s astonishment in Rom 10:20 at Isaiah’s blurting out the Good News of “our blessings and their troubles” is also quoted to this eﬀect. claiming that the congregation applauded him for it. without showing the uncritical acceptance of the legendary Letter 46 45 . however. Omelie. “Chrysostom on the obscurity of the Old Testament. And there is another circumstantial reason for the obscurity of the Old Testament.47 the revelation contained in its pages and “read out” to them was not always clear. we have it read out in another language. “In case the Jews should hear this clearly from the beginning and maltreat those saying so. Cf. 76. and it is for this latter subject that the preacher at his next synaxis remembers the homily (PG 49. moving to parenesis on the subject of backbiting.46 Chrysostom’s listeners would probably not need persuading of this diﬃculty. there is another reason for the obscurity that is more circumstantial: fear of reprisals being taken by the Jews against the Old Testament authors if the truth were plainly told. they concealed the prophecies under the diﬃculty of interpretation and imparted to them great obscurity in the contents. great diﬃculty ensues.
6. the dismissal of the synagogue. . after all. “clearer and easier” as they were? This conundrum must have presented itself to Antiochene listeners and readers of their pastors’ many commentaries. had they come to know from the beginning that the Law was temporary. even if certain truths are obscure. they mention also things that are fulﬁlled today—the calling of the Church. and the cancellation of the Law—which it was not necessary for them to know at the time. to counter it even while lecturing on obscurity. plagues and famines. but not everything: if it was going to be totally obscure. there would be no point in things being said to the people of that time. as Chrysostom goes on to say. especially as things Jewish were objects of suspicion and hostility. however. This is what I shall try to demonstrate.” He had made the point frequently at other times in his Antioch ministry. 48 Omelie. present fulﬁlment. or the shortcomings of the Greek version—why would their pastors go to the trouble of mediating to them all the numerous books and expect them to read them instead of conﬁning themselves to the “more important things” of the New Testament. the inspired writings make mention of wars of the time. Chrysostom feels it necessary. of Aristeas and even the divine inspiration of the Seventy translators shown by Theodore and Theodoret that we shall document in the next chapter.48 The “observable facts” prove the validity of the ancient writings. it is not a total obscurity. 96. the inherent inferiority of its contents. and the happily extant coverage by Theodoret of so much of it (including unique Greek works on Ruth and Chronicles). These things. he did not want them to know—just the things happening in their own time. Surely it would have been simpler merely to omit the Old Testament from consideration rather than labor its obscurity and the inﬁdelity of Jews in Old (and New) Testament times. however. The lengthy catalogues we have of Diodore’s and Theodore’s Old Testament commentaries (if not the works themselves). they would have utterly scorned it.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation F. that he made only these things obscure—what had to do with us and the synagogue. I mean. the cancellation of the Law. there is a “kinship of the Law with grace. show that the logic was not compelling. Revelation Old and New 43 If the Old Testament was so obscure—whether on account of listeners’ limitations. Some things in the Old Testament are obscured. if the Old Testament is obscure. After all.
endorses this “harmony” and “consensus” of the testaments (“The same Spirit gave voice through both the Old Testament and the New Testament tongue”).57. in fact. At least Antiochene pastors were convinced that God revealed himself and his plan in Old Testament authors and their works as well as in the New—hence their giving themselves to the task of commentary on it generously. 51 A sobriquet suggesting his Jewish mentality applied to him by editor A. and its absence from the two extant Old Testament commentaries of Theodore the Ioudaiophrôn51 may be due to his reluctance in them to extend his hermeneutical perspective to the New Testament.154–56.268. As with the person of Jesus.3).50 The same endorsement does not appear in the little we have of Diodore.310). 49 . and the fulﬁlment of it was clear to everyone. on Isaiah 8:13–14 (SC 276. on Ezekiel 34:15 (PG 81. for Theodoret. likewise what was said about Christ in the New Testament—which demonstrates above all the divine character of both Scriptures.32. and in the summary of work given at the beginning of his Questions on Leviticus in failing health ﬁve years later he makes no speciﬁc mention of Gospel commentary (Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum.52 Their commitment rested also on a profound theology of the inspired Word. there being no question of his esteem for psalmists or the Twelve. the psalter and the apostle” (SC 98.21).1157). Homily on Ps 110:1 (PG 55. The New Testament and the Old come from the same Spirit. Comm. and the same Spirit who gave utterance in the New spoke also here. 50 Comm. commentary on the New Testament will be in a minor key. and the progression from one to the other (“Through the inspired oracles we are led to the Gospel teaching to which they testify”). in which the scriptural text is analogous to the person of Jesus in being also an incarnation of that Word.121–202.11). 153). Sermon 1 on Gen (SC 433. 52 Theodoret remarks in Letter 82 to Eusebius of Ancyra in 448 that he had commented on “all the prophets.202). Do you see the relationship of both testaments? Do you see the harmony in their teaching? Do you see the consensus of Old Testament and New Testament statements?49 Theodoret.44 chapter three What was said by the Old Testament authors about the Jews came true.II).2). obscurity Homily on Ps 4:7 (PG 55. Homily on Ps 116:10 (PG 55. whose Questions on Exodus and Leviticus in particular show his familiarity with Old Testament Judaism. Mai in his 1832 preface to his edition of Theodore’s Commentary on The Twelve (PG 66.
and if there is a hierarchy in the two testaments in virtue of the superiority of teaching in the New. they are none the less Christological in their incarnational understanding of the divine communication given in the text of the Old Testament.antioch’s concept of scriptural revelation 45 in the Old Testament is but an implication of incarnation. Though in Chapter Eight we shall not ﬁnd Antiochene commentators endeavoring to ﬁnd Christ in all biblical texts in the manner that Cyril is at least reputed to have done. there is also the presence of the Spirit in the authors of each that calls for response. . It is therefore time to examine the precise character of the text read by them.
in fact. let us read it responsibly so as to get the complete sense of individual passages. on the contrary. are we to treat it with such indiﬀerence as to tear it limb from limb? How could this merit excuse or pardon?1 If we are lucky enough to have a Bible. Pss 10:11. We have seen himself and Theodoret likewise lamenting incomplete understanding of some psalms through focusing on the single verse used as a responsorium. the verses in question including Jer 10:23. 14:1. 1 . those inspired if obscure scriptures. and used to justify morally reprehensible behavior. No one. plus some Pauline texts. in reading out not a human law but the one brought down from heaven.2. mention the lawgiver and provide the text in its entirety. after all. it was not a diﬃcult matter to acquire and read in private a copy of the text of books of the Old Testament. Theodoret’s full commentary shows signs of transmission in the catenae. but judged it to have no claim to authenticity (nugas meras et quisquilias). But he criticizes also the incomplete reading of a biblical pericope.158. “Norms. he is saying. devotes a homily to the need to read the biblical text responsibly and not “mangle the limbs of Scripture” by lifting verses out of context. Hag 2:8.CHAPTER FOUR THE TEXT OF THE OLD TESTAMENT READ IN ANTIOCH For Christians in Antioch in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries. as he says. Some of these verses were “bandied about” from memory. would read out a royal law carelessly and in an oﬀhand manner: unless they were to detail the time. they would be punished and pay the ultimate penalty.” Henry Savile in the seventeenth century had come across in a library in Munich a full commentary on Jeremiah attributed to Chrysostom. “Lord. deﬁnitions and unalterable doctrines’: Chrysostom on Jeremiah. such as the Jeremiah verse that formed the text for his homily that day. like their fellows elsewhere. Chrysostom in Antioch. people’s ways are not their own.13. In our case. Nothing of Diodore or Theodore is extant on the prophet. See Hill. 127:1. Bernard de Montfaucon reports (PG 56. nor will human beings progress or direct their own going”. using a telling comparison to reinforce his point.153–54). PG 56.
3 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Reges et Paralipomena. Harry Gamble agrees with Theodoret about the availability of Christian books like those of the Bible for people suﬃciently (aﬄuent and) willing to acquire copies: Apparently the problem was not that Christian books were especially diﬃcult or expensive to procure for private use. 49. Gamble. Clark. but that few troubled to obtain them. 231.2 thus commend or at least acknowledge more studious readers of.” .1012. a reference to Matt 24:36 leads him to remark. books could be copied and distributed from the churches or monastic libraries where originals were held. he says. their own commentaries who possess or have access to a Bible with a view to delving further into its contents. 4 Books and Readers in the Early Church.4 With the more convenient codex replacing the roll or scroll. Books and Readers.48 chapter four A. 233. A. as is easy to realize for anyone willing to read that book. “Suﬃcient reﬂections have been made about the Gospel passage in the work on Matthew in a previous composition. Theodoret counts on the readers of his Questions having a biblical text to check his information. Books and Readers. Asceticism and Scripture in Early Christianity. Availability of a biblical text The Antioch Fathers of that period will.3 Speaking of this period. even if we have little evidence of commercial distribution. 4. and fewer still to read them. or listeners to. The Matthew Commentary is not extant. like Didymus in Alexandria.78). 6 In Chapter 1 we saw E. 5 Cf.5 they do imply the existence of a literate readership6 and of 2 Didymus is conﬁdent that some readers of his Commentary on Zechariah (composed about 387) have read also his other biblical works. contesting the view that only a small fraction of people in the Roman empire at this time were literate. 132–38. with which a studious reader will be familiar” (SC 85. to support his claim that a Deuteronomist or a Chronicler (terms not known to him. of course) drew on compositions of earlier authors. thinks of “a minority that probably never exceeded 15–20 percent. Gamble. Reading Renunciation. While the Antiochenes do not describe this process of dissemination in the detail left us by Augustine in the west. The ﬁrst book of the Kingdoms both in Hebrew and in Greek is called the inspired composition of Samuel.
159. that everything happened as the prophets foretold against the false prophets” (PG 56.151. Chrysostom’s homilies were available both in the form he released them and in stenographic transcription. we are told by Socrates (Church History 6. however. In the homily on Isa 45:6–7 given in Constantinople he is likewise complimentary to studious listeners: “This every scholar (filÒlogoi) knows.10 At still other times. Chrysostom adopts a diﬀerent tack in closing his homily on Ps 42 (outside the larger collection. on the other hand.4. while presumng this degree of literacy and availability. I seem to bore you by prolonging the sermon. 10 The attitude seems strange in one whom Libanius had hoped would succeed him as head of Antioch’s rhetorical school. he will urge his listeners. after teasing out the drift of God’s cryptic rebuke to Cain in Genesis 4:6–7 for his act of homicide and citing alternative views to his congregation in Homilies 18 and 19.1): “Lest. 41). on their return home from a synaxis.8 Chrysostom. 9 PG 53. meditate on them constantly at home and recite them all to your friends and your wives” (women not present. At times he can ﬂatter his congregation with the presumption of their ability to decide on variant readings of a text or its interpretation. seems ambivalent about the value of a studious attitude in more diligent and better educated (and better oﬀ) listeners to his homilies on the Old Testament. I shall thus close the sermon at this point by exhorting your good selves not to enter here to no eﬀect.the text of the old testament read in antioch 49 available copies of both individual biblical books (like “some of the Psalters” Diodore mentions)7 and their own commentaries.12–13). 1. see Hill. seemingly). 2 (PG 67. Historia Ecclesiastica 8. Bulk would have prevented assemblage of all biblical books in one volume. GCS N. to peruse their family Bible in the company of their wife and children.157.F.11 7 In commentary on Ps 7:13 (Commentarii. he decides to “leave it to your judgement to choose for yourselves which view seems worth following. PG 55. but to take up the refrains and make careful note of them as though they were pearls. as though these more scholarly people may venture to debate textual or hermeneutical issues with him to his discomﬁture. 11 The question as to whether men alone were in attendance at Chrysostom’s .1516). by contrast. “Chrysostom’s Commentary on the Psalms: homilies or tracts?” In some cases.”9 At other times he can be quoted as referring somewhat pejoratively to welleducated readers (filomaye¤w or filopon≈teroi). and in this process to mediate to them something of the beneﬁt they have gained from attendance at the golden-mouthed preacher’s homilies. according to Sozomen.6).1. 316. I shall leave the more studious (filopon≈teroi) to choose individual refrains and examine the force contained in them. 8 Eusebius in particular has left us ample evidence of the process of recording and producing copies of homilies delivered by preachers like Origen.
not disposed to see many of the Psalms referring to Jesus. In short.14 Without such a version they would have been at a loss: none of (and other preachers’) homilies. he leaves it to his readers to decide how to rebut them. taking issue with two Jewish interpretations that ﬁnd reference in it to David or Zerubbabel. Michael Weitzman in his The Syriac Version of the Old Testament. and failed to note that those preachers who exhorted to Bible reading. 90.13 B. to gain beneﬁt from them and provide spiritual nourishment for our soul. before dining or after dining. makes an exception (like master Diodore) in the case of Ps 110. P. his wife could then hear it. Brock. by taking the sacred books in hand. .” Textus 15 (1990). exhorting you in your goodness to remember what has been said and keep it ever in your mind. Cf. and earlier work by S.12 Theodore. 8 (studiosi the ﬁfth century Latin version. 49: “It appears that (Adolf ) Harnack mistook prescription of Bible reading for description of actual practices. were addressing higher-class (i. The father of the family might repeat something of what was said here. The Hebrew text a closed book Preachers and commentators on the Old Testament.” 13 Le commentaire. See also previous note. . Let us leave it up to each reader as to whether they choose to employ these arguments also against those who claimed this psalm refers to Zerubbabel . . 55–76. even the domestics might be instructed. 253. could access the Peshitta in those centuries). studious readers of it and heads of families—all Greek speakers alike in Antioch and Alexandria had available to them the biblical text in a Greek version of the language of composition (as any native Syriac speakers.4. the household might become a church . such as John Chrysostom. 14 On the basis also of work by J. lay out with your meal a spiritual meal as well. unlike the norm for Christians-in-general. like Theodoret.50 chapter four It is better to conclude our sermon at this point. . We will be able while at home.. or were the sole intended readers of written commentaries.8). was addressed in Chapter One. the Grk text not extant at that point). Joosten. 12 Homily 2 and 10 on Gen (PG 53. At all events. . Reading Renunciation. “The Old Testament quotations in the Old Syriac and Peshitta Gospels.e. Clark.31. more literate) congregations. when you go home from here. any of our brethren who are of a scholarly bent will be able to equip themselves adequately with the same defense against both parties. the children too could learn something.
The Septuagint in Context. unable to detect the alphabetic structure of certain psalms. beginning with the aﬃrmative testimony of Eusebius and Jerome.15 Though the Antiochenes will not concede this handicap. bears much responsibility. Kelly. By contrast. J. Writings and Controversies. none will be so bold as to claim ﬂuency in Hebrew. H. mais avait à sa disposition un commentaire portant des indications sur le texte hébraique. Histoire d’une entreprise apologétique au V e siècle.the text of the old testament read in antioch 51 them. N. ce que lui permet de faire parfois illusion. Canivet. “Women. Laus Diodori (PG 52. comes to the justiﬁed conclusion that “l’auteur du commentaire ne connaisait pas l’hebreu. 17 Chrysostom. and the image of God: Antiochene interpretations. Crouzel. Diodore. Origen. concedes. Barr. human identity. 18 N. for instance..-M. 170.”17 and on the basis of an extant fragment of comment on Gen 2:23 a modern commentator will commend Diodore for “his mostly accurate knowledge of the Hebrew text” and “erudition as an exegete. Amongst the Fathers. Fernández Marcos. Latter Prophets and Psalms was available and had attained authoritative status by c. if not unique. Origen’s biographer. 12.” . assembles evidence on the degree of Origen’s knowledge of Hebrew.764. 375 ( J. in Pss 34. 204–206. For this general ignorance. Harrison. but he must have had enough to direct the compilation of the Hexapla. Their occasional ventures into linguistic and syntactic niceties of the Hebrew text can be fraught with unfortunate solecisms betraying their limitations. 50). even if the actual work was done by some assistant. the founder of the Antiochene method of exegesis16 and director of the asketerion attended by Chrysostom and Theodore. even the preachers and commentators. see P. the editor of Diodore’s Psalms Commentary. Jerome. 37). despite sensing the eﬀect this can have on the psalmist’s movement of thought (e. of Lucian) and the legitimacy of use of the terms “school” and “exegesis” can be left to Chapter Seven. J. xcviii. D.g.4). 16 Discussion of Diodore’s claim to this title (ahead. say. Though one of these alumni will dutifully refer to “this wise father of ours. the Commentary on the Psalms. Olivier. For Theodoret’s being a native Syriac speaker.” Jerome’s familiarity with Hebrew was due to time spent with a Jewish convert in Chalcis c. Commentarii. “Certainly it would be wrong to credit Origen with a knowledge of Hebrew like Jerome’s.”18 one has only to follow him through his sole fully extant work. 26–27. He is. V. unwilling to admit to shows that the Peshitta version of Pentateuch. Like many a teacher. and some will—especially with youthful brashness—like to imply a familiarity with semitic usage. By the early fourth century all the canonical books are quoted by Aphrahat from the Peshitta. “St Jerome’s appreciation of Hebrew. Jerome’s drilling in Hebrew is exceptional. 15 Cf. had a knowledge of Hebrew—a serious handicap for exegetes and hermeneuts of the Old Testament. His Life.” N. to recognize his shortcomings.” JECS 9 (2001) 210–11.
22 Cf. thinks “Theodore probably knew some Hebrew . such as occurs in Ps 48:9. where his local text reads. 110. “The heaven is the Lord’s heaven. clearly under Diodore’s inﬂuence. vi.” Theodore’s editor Angelo Mai is unsure. He was not so proﬁcient as Jerome. on the Psalms. citing for contrast his (Greek) text of Ps 115:16. R. Hill. “temple.” but without presenting evidence of the kind L. “temple. Chrysostom even with a ﬂourish of false erudition citing the Hebrew term hecal. Exegete and Theologian. Le commentaire. on the Twelve Prophets. And he is not far into his next work.” which he corrects to read “They will not inhabit” on the grounds that the Bible “expresses it as usual with a change Commentarii. A.20 Predictably. Stating singular things as plural is a Hebrew idiom. speaks of Theodore’s “uncommon knowledge of the Bible.52 chapter four imperfect knowledge. Elsewhere he illustrates this more clearly by speaking in this case not in the plural but in the singular. before encountering a confusion of past and future tenses by his Septuagint version in Hosea 9:2.” 20 19 . “but the earth he has given to human beings.” a scribe obviously having copied naoË. he will dogmatize on textual details when he should be more tentative (a habit Theodore will learn from him).121–22. painstakingly assembles to the opposite conclusion. .219. 100. your mercy in the midst of your people. particularly in his ﬁrst work. and he goes on.”19 He is unable to detect the many shortcomings of the LXX in rendering the Hebrew text.21 As a young scholar. 21 Devreesse. “His Master’s Voice: Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Psalms. where—unfortunately for him—the Hebrew term is again in the plural.” as laoË. thinking (on unconvincing grounds) that he did know Syriac (PG 66. Theodore of Mopsuestia. when Ps 19 opens with the celebrated verse. Pirot. L’Oeuvre exégètique de Théodore de Mopsueste.22 he claims a grasp of Hebrew syntax he did not in fact possess. 96–100. especially in the case of heavenly things. PG 55.” to prove that the version “people” is correct!). “We suspected. Diodore’s student Theodore suﬀers his master’s linguistic limitations—though again he has his modern champions. .II). either on account of their importance or also by another custom. “The heavens tell of the glory of God. “people” (a solecism his pupils will replicate.” Diodore assures his readers that the plural “heavens” is normal Hebrew usage. Greer. O God. “They did not inhabit the Lord’s land.” in the sense of dedicated. and even to recognize a scribal error.2.
You frequent the idol’s shrine and care for it. he is forever fastening on examples of synecdoche as illustrative of “Hebrew parlance” rather than general literary expression. suﬀered the same limitation in approaching the biblical text. and those who know Syriac conﬁrm this.23 As well as attributing confusion in tenses in his text to the Hebrew and not to its translators. It is probably not necessary to proceed to demonstrate that the other two principal commentators on the Old Testament in Antioch.4). When he notes a double focus in the prophecy of Habakkuk. he compares it to the LXX Ps 9. And so on. when he comes to the Hebrew plural form for “heaven” in Gen 1:1 that the LXX renders as the singular oÈranÒw. term. When he arrives at the mention of two astral deities in Amos 5:26 which his local text renders as Moloch and Remphan (Raiphan in other LXX forms). as was pointed out on many occasions in blessed David’s usage. but unaware that the alphabetic structure in the Hebrew conﬁrms the judgement of the Seventy to maintain it as one piece.the text of the old testament read in antioch 53 in tense. John Chrysostom and Theodoret. . “which I suﬃciently demonstrated in the case of the Psalms as well.24 Theodoret will enjoy the latter advantage of familiarity with that dialect of Aramaic to sense the force of a Heb. Homily 4 (PG 53. he is more circumspect than his mentor in conceding the need for enlightenment in saying.” In other ways as well he shows his inability to appreciate the original. which he is aware appears in Hebrew as two psalms. and you are also involved in worship of a star. giving it the name of a god (commentators claiming that in the language of the Hebrews the morning star is given this name). 136–37.43. Those with a precise knowledge of that language tell us that among the Hebrews the word ‘heaven’ is used in the plural.” He wrongly detects the same reversal of tenses in Hos 12:9. he admits his indebtedness to predecessors with more developed semitic lore: By Moloch he refers to the idol worshiped by them. and by tent of Moloch he means. The former will admit it in his long series of homilies on Genesis. but (again despite modern commentators’ willingness to concede him a knowledge 23 24 Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius.
“support. Rondeau. 27 While it is still possible to ﬁnd a modern commentary on an Old Testament book which ignores the history of exegesis to the extent of failing to engage with patristic commentary. 26 For Diodore the titles “are in most cases faulty. to acknowledge the history of the text. then. And yet even as eminent a commentator on Jer as W. ne˙iloth) in the title to Ps 5 with the verb na˙al.26 Like Chrysostom he accepts the confusion by the LXX of the musical direction for “ﬂutes” (Heb. Though it seems to be a fact of which many modern commentators on the Bible are unaware to their detriment. Antioch commentators’ biblical text Antiochene commentators on the Old Testament. McKane can speak of the Septuagint as though a univocal term and use simplistic phrases like “missing from the LXX” when a passage in fact is to be found in the Antioch form.” though we do not get a subsequent discourse on inheritances to the length to which Chrysostom goes. In the title to Ps 46 the word for “maidens. and at the close of commentary on Ps 111 he has to take others’ word for the fact that this psalm and the next have an alphabetic structure. may have been led by the term “bilingue” used by Canivet of Theodoret to conclude that Greek and Hebrew were his two languages. e. text and the Greek forms oblige a commentator in the case of Jeremiah.” shoshanim.” as though from shanah. the compilers of the psalms mostly guessing at their connection and not placing them by meaning” (Commentarii. The similar musical direction in the title to Ps 22. “conceal. in Les commentaire patristiques du Psautier (III e–V e siècles) 1. were heavily dependent on the Greek version of the biblical text in common use in their church. “The Deer of Dawn” (apparently a cue to a melody). textual discrepancies between our Masoretic Heb.g. “deer. he frequently fails to recognize cases where the LXX has misread the tense of Hebrew verbs. The evidence belies it. is read as “on the secrets” as though from alam..” alamoth. for example. 6).” is rendered as “on support at dawn.-J. is rendered as “those to be changed. as reference to one of the Göttingen volumes would reveal.” likewise with Ps 45 the cue “For the Lilies.54 chapter four of Hebrew)25 he will show the same inability as Chrysostom to detect the solecisms committed by the LXX in rendering the titles of the Psalms (which Diodore to his credit had dissuaded Theodore from taking seriously as being later insertions). “inherit.” .27 the Antioch text diﬀered signiﬁcantly (if not in major proportions) 25 M.” And so on. C.” as though from "eyalut. See Hill. 136. As well. “Orientale lumen: Western biblical scholarship’s unacknowledged debt. from "ayyelet.
Titus 3:9 (PL 26.180. but our Heb. 31 Ed. But in general 28 Jerome. and sometimes they fall short of the others. 6:12) Theodoret cites a “ﬁfth edition. whose pioneering work on the Song Theodoret acknowledges in his preface. thinks it shows the inﬂuence of Origen. you would never prefer another version to that of the Seventy. 215.” which owes its name to its appearance in the Hexapla as a ﬁfth Greek version after those of the Three. 32 PG 80.30 The Antiochenes still believed. Theodoret judges the phrase “a wisp of smoke” in his text of 3:6 of the Song “a servile rendering of the Hebrew.28 on 2 Sam. however. 1962.31 and because of these origins their version was both divinely inspired and superior to any subsequent version in another language. SC 89.864. defends the text of the Psalter on the grounds that “the translators—not without divine inspiration—turned them into the Greek language. Comm. Pelletier.” “Those of the company of Aquila”). Not that this belief made it immune to criticism. Not that everything is translated better by them: there are places.” probably by comparison with Aquila and Symmachus (PG 81.the text of the old testament read in antioch 55 from the Greek text used in other churches. Comm. supports it. The Septuagint in Context. the Hexapla. If you have an eye to sequence and composition of the sense of the text. Fernández Marcos. Cf. in fact. who was also ignorant of the scope of the original translators.28 which oﬀered not only a Hebrew text (plus a transliteration) but also one (or more)29 alternative forms (ént¤grafa) of the version known as the Septuagint as well as the versions associated with the names of the Jewish translators Aquila.120).1). Barthélemy. . Commentators in Antioch in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries were alerted to this textual diversity if they took the trouble to consult a copy of that great resource compiled by Origen in Caesarea. 30 Theodoret also cites an obscure translator named Josephus (not the historian). 29 Twice in commentary on the Song of Songs (on 5:11. as in replying to Q. Theodoret. Symmachus and Theodotion (“The Three. L’Exégèse de Théodoret de Cyr. who said things more clearly and logically. that their local form of the Greek text derived from the work of that original corps of translators. unaware that the Letter refers only to translation of the Torah. A. sees it as part of a Palestinian revision of the LXX. speaks of the Hexapla as widely available at one time in Palestine but later becoming defective. their version was preferable to any other (as he says in comment on Ps 56). inspiration predictably for him not being the key factor. Les devanciers d’Aquila. 266–70.”32 For Theodore. as outlined in the legendary Letter of Aristeas (to Philocrates). the Seventy. Ps 1:4 (CCL 72. where they oﬀer the weaker version. 169–72. Jean-Nöel Guinot.594–95).
365. concedes that the clarity of Old Testament texts has suﬀered in the process of translation. it remained in the Hebrew tongue.34 Chrysostom. For the student there are many signs of the greater attention to eﬀect by the Seventy and the care for greater clarity by Symmachus. as long as it was addressed to one race of the Jews. on the other hand. All who are versed in many languages are aware of this. was done by seventy men. Theodore for his part would want the LXX despite its faults to be preferred to a version in any other language. approved of by the priest and all the Israelite people as particularly suited to 33 34 Le commentaire. That it is to say. Predecessors who opted for its rendering of Zeph 1:5 were obviously wrong. it involves great diﬃculty. whereas we received it in the language of the Greeks. They ought to realise this before everything else. too. the Peshitta enjoyed no such credentials. sees the process of translation to be in no way miraculous. 114–16.56 chapter four by comparison with the others they are found far superior even if saying many things less competently. Three hundred years before the coming of Christ. possessing a precise knowledge of their own language and a knowledge of the divine Scriptures. the Old Testament was translated into Greek for pressing reasons of usefulness and necessity. remember. elders of the people. to be found in these commentators repeatedly)—not that Theodore is capable of a valid comparison.33 It is a signiﬁcant admission that Symmachus gives a “clearer” wersion than the LXX (perhaps a conventional concession. We do not have the Old Testament written for us in our native tongue: while it was composed in one language. it was written originally in the Hebrew tongue. they were translated into Syriac by somebody or other (his identity is unknown to this day). that whereas the contents of the divine Scripture are composed in Hebrew. just pragmatically necessary for Greek-speakers. and was a priori rated inferior to the LXX. Chrysostom. and whenever a language is rendered into another language. how it is not possible to transfer the clarity naturally contained in the words when moving to another language. You see. we have it read in another language. Homily 2. when Ptolemy was still king of the Egyptians. Omelie. while likewise acknowledging the antiquity of his Greek version. The translation into Greek. it is one of the reasons he gives for its obscurity in his two homilies on the subject. .2.
however. Constantinople-Antioch and “the provinces in-between. (PL 28. All of us. What Lucian’s role was in the development of the Antioch text. Praef. Les devanciers d’Aquila. being redolent of Judaism). respectively. 37 For Quasten.838. and to the believers from the nations who formerly had no access at all to the contents of the Old Testament they passed on the divine Scriptures written in Greek in the translation of the Seventy. Christian Antioch. Their translation and publication the blessed apostles clearly seem to have accepted.” the second of these being another version which Origen and Eusebius of Caesarea and all the Greek commentators call the popular (koinÆ) text. 283–84. By his time in the fourth century CE. however. or Septuagint. and which by most is now called the Lucianic text. reading them aloud in the churches and keeping them at home. says Barthélemy. but in fact) in the second century BCE. it would seem from his argument and Chrysostom’s. either). Origin and character of the Antioch text These Antioch commentators are conﬁdent that the biblical text of their church stems directly from that original translation of the Hebrew text into Greek in Alexandria (purportedly in the third. D. 143.37 we saw them tracing their text directly back to Alexandria (though not citing that city. in Paral. in Alexandria.35 So the local Greek text was the textus receptus for the Gentile church in Antioch (the Hebrew text. 126–27. there are those who would Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. received the Scriptures from them and now enjoy them.” but WallaceHadrill. “Lucian was the father of Arianism.1324–25). denies that this was his reputation in Antioch. as the Antiochenes make no mention of Lucian. did not seem to use that latter term—understandably. 36 35 . in view of Lucian’s tarnished reputation. is the subject of debate. Ep. Patrology 2. having come to faith in Christ the Lord from the nations. which came to be known as work of The Seventy. 87. and whether such a text originated in Antioch.36 “Greek commentators” in Antioch. 106 (PL 22. a student of the history of the text like Jerome acknowledged three Greek texts that were current. Jerome was wrong in using the term. while admitting “paucity of reference” to him.2).the text of the old testament read in antioch 57 translating.
WallaceHadrill. Brock. is not in favor of Kahle’s notion of a number of separate translations like the targums. Despite the length of the commentaries on Old Testament books by these ancient preachers and writers. 126–127. N. and D. P. like P. J. Les Devanciers d’Aquila. O’Connell. where the biblical text is cited. S. prefers to speak of a “texte Antiochien. to restrict the term “Septuagint” to a distinct version. A revising role for Lucian is conceded by D. Wevers. 30. E. Jellicoe. Hanhart. Drewery. 42 “The Antiochene text of the Greek Bible. Busto Saiz. Fernández Marcos came to believe.2. 40 Fernández Marcos. A.39 while others see simply reworkings of an Ur-Septuagint that by Jerome’s time constituted a family of texts. yet he sees the LXX as a “collection of translations” (xi. 39 S. Those who have given their attention to this form of the LXX (if we are not. Christian Antioch. like R.” 106. Barthélemy. “The Lucianic text in the Books of Kingdoms. sees a translation developed in Antioch and revised by Lucian. . Fernández Marcos. W. “Antiochien. J. Barthélemy.” TRE 6. The Septuagint in Modern Study. “Texts and versions.38 even if only for Lucian later to revise. The Cairo Genizah. 256–57. Kahle. would place the revision in Palestine. Sáenz-Badillos. 41 Fernández Marcos. B. S. Because it was believed that some parts of the Octateuch and much of Kingdoms would 38 P. 22). G. “Bibelübersetzungen I. Kahle. that completed in the second century in Alexandria). suggest that the development of such distinctive features was more piecemeal. 53–57. not to mention the loss of so many to the ﬂames of prejudice fanned against Antiochene ﬁgures in particular.” and K. R.” 28. We are warned that “there is no clear idea of what this recension consisted nor whether it extended to the whole Bible or not.40 It would be fatuous to think that we might one day come across a complete Antiochene Bible that illustrates Lucianic features throughout.” 1092.” 102.166–67. 160–161.58 chapter four support the development in Antioch of a distinct text. The Septuagint in Context. denies Lucian the ability to translate from the Hebrew.42 and the same would be true of the rest of the Old Testament. One of the reasons for the uncertainty concerning the Lucianic recension of the Octateuch was the lack of critical editions of the Antiochene Fathers. we are gradually amassing a collection of critical editions that throw such light on their local text. whereas D.”41 Clarifying these issues depends rather on our becoming acquainted with the biblical commentaries of the Antioch Fathers.
the text of the old testament read in antioch
illustrate peculiarly Antiochene features, Fernández Marcos edited the happily extant Questions on the Octateuch of Theodoret (similar work by Diodore and Theodore only fragmentarily extant) in conjunction with A. Sáenz-Badillos, to which Chrysostom’s collections of homilies (PG)43 and sermons (crit. ed.)44 on Genesis are relevant, and also the Questions on Kingdoms and Chronicles in conjunction with J. R. Busto Saiz. The evidence arising from the critical edition of the Octateuch Questions suggested that “at least a typically Antiochene text emerges in the last three books,”45 viz, Joshua, Judges, Ruth. The critical edition of the Kgs & Chr Questions conﬁrmed the impression of “a single, uniform text with very clear textual characteristics” in Kingdoms (1 Sam–2 Kgs).46 Antiochene commentary on the Psalter is represented by complete works from Diodore and Theodoret,47 the former in part available in a critical edition,48 a collection of ﬁfty eight homilies by Chrysostom,49 and a critical edition of commentary on eighty one psalms by Theodore, partly in Greek and partly in early Latin translation.50 The biblical text of the Psalter appearing in these commentaries reveals
a textual phenomenon similar to that of the Greek New Testament: in books extensively used in the liturgy, the presence of diﬀerent textual forms was particularly disturbing.51
The text of the prophets in Antioch shows evidence of a reworking that also can be called Lucianic;52 we have a complete commentary
PG 53, 54 contains the 67 homilies on Genesis. Eight sermons, ed. L. Brottier, SC 433. Of the text of Gen found in Chrysostom and Theodoret, Fernández Marcos can remark, The Septuagint in Context, 229, on the basis of work by Wevers that “if there had been a Lucianic recension in Genesis, (the Antiochenes) did not know it.” 45 The Septuagint in Context, 229. 46 The Septuagint in Context, 230. 47 PG 80. 48 Ed. Olivier, Diodori Tarsensis Commentarii in Psalmos 1. Commentarii in Psalmos I–L (CCG 6). 49 PG 55. 50 Ed. Devreesse, Le commentaire de Théodore de Mopsueste sur les psaumes I–LXXX. 51 Fernández Marcos, “Some reﬂections on the Antiochian text of the Septuagint,” 221. In a review of Devreesse’s work, Albert Vaccari had noted in Theodore’s text what he calls “lezioni originali, genuine, conservate nel detto commento, perdutesi invece nel resto della tradizione” (Bib 21  212). 52 The conclusion is that of R. Hanhart, cited by Fernández Marcos, The Septuagint in Context, 236.
on Isaiah by Theodoret critically edited (containing a score of distinctive readings),53 and six homilies on Isaiah 6 by Chrysostom also critically edited.54 Theodoret’s Commentary on Jeremiah in the extant form shows signs of transmission in the catenae,55 yet contains elements prematurely declared “missing from the LXX” by modern commentators. His Ezekiel Commentary56 incorporates over a score of distinctively Antiochene readings; in the view of Leslie McGregor, “the Greek translation of Ezekiel is not homogeneous,” there being three diﬀerent sections, not all by the one translator.57 In Theodoret’s Commentary on Daniel58 it is the Theodotion version that appears as the biblical text in preference to the LXX, as usual with the Antiochenes. Both Theodore and Theodoret have left us full commentaries on The Twelve Prophets (listed in the order of the Heb., not the LXX), the former available in a critical edition;59 and we can see from a comparison of these with the earlier work on Zechariah by Didymus known to both that the Antioch text incorporates other distinctive features. In short, it can be said of the text of the Old Testament at Antioch— whether interpreted by commentators oral and written, or read by signiﬁcant numbers of private readers—that it was distinctive and able to be recognized by Jerome and others by the fourth century as a widespread text, and by today’s readers of the verse-by-verse commentaries of the Antioch Fathers (to the extent that they have survived prejudice and the passage of time). It was the result of revision or reworking, if not retranslation, and beneﬁted from other such recensions. The characteristics of such a distinctive text are still in
By J.-N. Guinot, SC 276, 295, 315; 1980, 1982, 1984. By J. Dumortier, SC 277; 1981. 55 PG 81. Discovery of a manuscript in Constantinople with an introduction to the Jeremiah Commentary in a diﬀerent form suggests that the PG text may owe something to the catenae. Complete deterioration of this manuscript rules out the possibility of further comparison. 56 PG 81. 57 The Greek Test of Ezekiel, 197. McGregor’s conclusion is “that the multiple-translator theories as opposed to the translator-reviser theories cannot be rejected entirely.” This verdict, he believes, is not aﬀected by the moot point of distribution of divine names in both Hebrew and Greek texts. 58 PG 81. 59 By H. N. Sprenger, Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius in XII Prophetas. Theodoret’s text is found in PG 81, as is his Commentary on the Song of Songs.
the text of the old testament read in antioch
process of identiﬁcation, book by book, which will beneﬁt from a growing number of critical editions of the Antioch Fathers’ commentaries.60 Yet already it can be said that this recension had as its aim to ﬁll in the gaps in the LXX in respect of the Hebrew text, to improve on mere transliteration of obscure terms by a puzzled LXX, to supply clarifying items, and in short to come up with “a full text with no omissions.”61 We await the further clariﬁcation— as, of course, we await further research into Hebrew texts more ancient than the Masoretic, and a wider acceptance by today’s biblical scholars that LXX is not a univocal term and that access to editions of the LXX like those from Göttingen and to critical editions of Antiochene patristic commentaries like those from Paris and Madrid is essential if modern commentary is not to be as jejune as some in the past.62 We should turn now to examine the degree to which the Antioch Fathers in our period possessed the necessary skills to read and mediate to their ﬂock the text they had inherited.
60 Notice has been given of inclusion in the Sources Chrétiennes series of critical editions of Theodoret’s commentaries on the Song of Songs and the Twelve Prophets. A critical edition has been prepared by G. Bady of a commentary on Proverbs attributed to Chrysostom; the biblical text contains some distinctive readings. 61 Fernández Marcos, The Septuagint in Context, 230. 62 See Hill, “Orientale lumen: western biblical scholarship’s unacknowledged debt.” It is perhaps worthwhile also making the plea that miscellanies of patristic comments on the biblical text, like the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture and The Church’s Bible, may also intimate to readers that the Fathers cited may be reading diverse forms of that text, giving rise to diverse interpretations.
Here instead the focus is not on the meaning given to texts. The preference here. by the term “school” we may properly refer in the case of Antioch or any other ancient center to a fellowship of like-minded scholars joined by birth. so admired in the biblical text and its readers by the Antiochene commentators.” . sense.” textbooks often have in mind rather interpretation by a group of scholars of texts already established and read2—a focus we shall adopt in Chapter Eight on Antiochene hermeneutics. in reaching his conclusion. has been both to avoid comparisons of Antioch with other ancient centers and approaches and to achieve the akribeia. as noted in the preface.” 2 Likewise when Wallace-Hadrill remarks. if limited. as does Schäublin. whether superﬁcial or more profound. 39.CHAPTER FIVE EXEGETICAL SKILLS AND RESOURCES IN ANTIOCH Modern biblical textbooks that trace the history of Christian understanding of the Bible not infrequently draw comparisons between “schools of exegesis” in the early centuries. real or pseudonymous.” 104. “Antiochien. dependent upon the commentator’s ability to read it. and on the history of that text. admits of Antioch “keine Schule im formalen Sinn des Wortes. Olivier in speaking frequently of Antioch’s “méthode exégètique” has all aspects of the explanatory process in mind. For one thing. Untersuchungen. geography and scholarly principles. goes beyond that sense in referring to the “school of Caesarea. “Exegesis at Antioch was not monolithic. 173. Once such skills are identiﬁed. but on the skills and resources of Antiochene commentators in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries to conduct exegesis in that more precise. Drewery. 121–23. implying overall diﬀerences in interpretation of the text. Christian Antioch. In speaking of “schools of exegesis. and making judgements on the authorship of the text. “Die antiochenische Exegese von der paganen Grammatik herkommt. the commentaries nominated in the following chapter 1 Quasten.” he is referring rather to hermeneutics. whether single or multiple. precision.” Origen’s refuge after his exile from Egypt. Patrology 2. B.1 And the term “exegesis” could helpfully be conﬁned to stages in a process of explication that involves establishing and critiquing the text to be read and commented on. In so doing they can be guilty of imprecision in their use of these terms.
5 He found the discrepancy both in the former and in the columns of the latter providing him with the Hebrew and its transliteration (accessed more easily by reference to the Syriac) and with the alternative versions. found to be more distinctive than the former.” but Theodoret will later observe. 3 Though this title has been accorded also to Lucian. “Le vrai fondateur de l’école d’Antioche est Diodore de Tarse” (“Interprétation chez les pères.” 4 PG 80. in the LXX it reads. . whose distinguishing features varied in degree from other forms of the LXX in diﬀerent parts of the Bible—the latter books of the Octateuch. with the possible exception of Origen—had a good grounding in Hebrew.” 580). an obvious handicap in reading and interpreting Old Testament material. No commentary of Chrysostom on this psalm is extant. for instance. Commentarii. L’Exégèse.1161. either. would do well to note this distinctiveness and to concede that “Septuagint” is not a univocal term. but it is not in the Hebrew or the Syriac or the other translators. Establishing and critiquing a text To what degree of criticism did Diodore.”4 Industrious as he always is. We observed in Chapter Four. Modern commentators. ciii. the Hexapla. classes Diodore as “le véritable fondateur.64 chapter five can be examined for the degree to which they exemplify them. Bardy says without qualiﬁcation. doubts that he possessed a copy. We also observed that the Antiochenes had as a textus receptus their own distinctive Greek version for reading and commentary. “The phrase and needy I found in some manuscripts (ént¤grafa). though conceding Theodoret’s (uneven) reference to the Hexapla. A. Diodore’s editor Olivier. that none of the Antioch Fathers—or those elsewhere in the east. we noted. 5 Guinot. 182. for instance. and it should also not be presumed that the Hebrew Vorlage of (any form of ) the LXX is identical with that of the Masoretic text commonly in use in exegesis classes today. though conceding to Lucian the title “initiateur” of Antioch’s historical method. founder of the Antiochene school of exegesis. Theodoret had checked his local text against the Peshitta and that great resource of Origen’s.3 submit the biblical text of Psalms when lecturing on them in his askêtêrion? The opening verse of Ps 41 gives us a clue. “Blessed is the one who understands the poor and needy. whereas the LXX form in the Hexapla showed no such discrepancy.
Dahood.14 to the movement of thought of Ps 10 in the LXX puzzles both Chrysostom and Theodoret. will ﬁnd the verse out of keeping with the psalm’s movement of thought and amend it—not an option open to an Antiochene. also typically. 249.” without checking other versions. we are not surprised to ﬁnd pupil Theodore also little interested in such matters (though we have to concede that our text of the commentaries does not always come to us directly from the commentators). where admittedly we are considerably dependent upon the catenae. While the relevance of v.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 65 The young Theodore. a ninth could be added. of Aquila on Ps 3:4. A modern commentator like Dahood. 254.” In comment on Ps 7:13b Diodore claims to have found a diﬀerent reading in “some of the Psalters” which does not aﬀect the meaning (Commentarii. “Symmachus says.’” and then simply applied the verse historically to Hezekiah. 10 Cf. let alone the Hebrew itself.8 generally that of Symmachus and then mainly to conﬁrm the LXX rather than gain clariﬁcation from an alternative rendering. there probably being a number of available copies of the Psalter.10 and to Theodoret. Since Diodore had shown so little concern for establishing the text on which he was commenting. even Theodoret. as is his interest in employing them. ‘The one who has a thought for the poor. even to modern commentators. Ps 17:14 likewise proves obscure. but the youthful Theodore magisterially condemns his LXX version. Psalms 1. who turn to Ugaritic and Akkadian for assistance. 8 Olivier lists eight of these (Commentarii.7 Throughout commentary on the entire Psalter Diodore checks his LXX text against the alternative versions only at nine places. and has recourse only to rationalizing. his interest in textual matters is at best sporadic. Theodore simply observes. In his Psalms Commentary. c: “Peut-être l’auteur ne disposait-il pas des Hexaples et a-t-il simplement utilisé les lecons citées dans un commentaire qu’il avait sous le main. had not bothered to check anything beyond his local copy of the Psalter. xcix). 9 Commentarii. Psalms 1.9 certainly his textual resources seem quite limited. leading them to check with the alternative versions.6 despite his mentor’s taking some little trouble: Diodore had observed. 99. 41). “This results from a bad translation from the Hebrew. His editor Olivier is led to the conclusion that Diodore possibly did not have access to a copy of the Hexapla. 7 6 . who looks to the alternative versions. Le commentaire.
Theodoret opting for the apostles. the nations. He fails to detect the alphabetic structure of the Ps 9 in the LXX which appears as two in the Hebrew: This ninth psalm. According to this meaning everything said by him comes together with complete consistency. since they can hardly be explained through the Greek translation. in fact. which is divided into two in the Hebrew and Syriac.11 He will frequently and gratuitously rule on what he styles “Hebrew idiom. in fact. to the powerful and strong—that is. it is Hebrew peculiarities in particular that made this place diﬃcult for us. Dahood for Canaanite and Phoenician deities.” despite not having a good grasp of Hebrew. at one place he feels competent to generalize 11 12 Le commentaire. In Ps 16 the reference in v. “I shall exult in salvation. however. Though reference to these alternative versions in the Psalms Commentary is infrequent. That is not the meaning in Syriac and Hebrew. 92 (Latin version alone extant).12 When he does cite Aquila or Symmachus. Now. This. contributing nothing to clarity of thought.66 chapter five The diﬃculty and obscurity in this place arise from the Greek translation.’” which hardly represents a reﬁnement. He will occasionally cite both Hebrew and Syriac.3 to “holy ones” is obscure. because all my wishes are in them. ‘Delighted in your salvation. of whom he can be typically disparaging. It is not a problem to Theodore.” Theodore mechanically adds. which we shall resolve by proceeding with God’s help to the interpretation. was the wish of the people of Israel. has been combined into one with us for reasons I am unaware of. By the meaning which at ﬁrst ﬂush seems to arise from the Greek text. perhaps from predecessors. to the LXX version of Ps 9:14. and have thus missed the truth and the force of the words. Le commentaire. . 108. for divine vengeance to scatter their assailants. you could easily get the impression that the phrase the holy ones who are in the land was said of the Israelites. it can be a mere gesture. where it reads this way: To the proud and mighty. some commentators have taken that sense as being readily accessible. “Aquila. who do not cease to surround us and cause us trouble—you have made yourself so much an object of wonder that all my wishes were in them when they perish under your attack and are consigned to ruin and the sword. You have shown your wonders to the holy ones who are in the land.
Theodore’s comment on Ps 68:33. but actually have a close resemblance in meaning. and the other in a less verbatim manner wanting to bring out the sense of the Hebrew by more striking expressions. on the other hand.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 67 on the respective merits of Symmachus and the LXX. Psalms 2. in fact. For the student there are many signs of the greater attention to eﬀect by the Seventy and the care for greater clarity by Symmachus. to clarify the meaning and to demonstrate that they were not speaking in discord. the diﬀerence is between one speaking more clearly by attending to the meaning. as you can also ﬁnd in many and almost the majority of places elsewhere as well. where they oﬀer the weaker version. But in general by comparison with the others they are found far superior even if saying many things less competently. Hence some commentators. lacking an eye to sequence.14 13 14 Dahood. Le commentaire. who said things more clearly and logically. the frequent contradiction where it seems he is saying two diﬀerent things. Now. 43. He proceeds to make a (rare) appeal to Symmachus. which a modern Hebraist will solve by emendation. and sometimes they fall short of the others. Cf. though not in every place reading the text in a manner worthy of his own aspirations. you would never prefer another version to that of the Seventy. believed Symmachus’s version superior on the basis of the clarity in what was before them. 364–65. Symmachus for his part gave signs of attending to clarity.13 but in regard to which Theodore’s lack of Hebrew leaves him unsure which language is the source of the problem: We found this idiom in blessed David in many other places in the psalms as well. and balances this asset against the merits of his local text. in many places being found at variance with clarity and putting himself in opposition to the meaning. We also compared Symmachus’s version of each expression in the divine Scripture with the version of the Seventy. The opening clause of Ps 56:6 contains an apparent contradiction. Hence. either arising from a Hebrew idiom or occurring this way in the translation. the alternative translator proverbial for his clarity. Not that everything is translated better by them: there are places. . on the one hand. We commented on it for this purpose. and showed how Symmachus seems to have been using a version of his own. But if you have an eye to sequence and composition of the sense of the text. while the Seventy for their part were more anxious indiscriminately to preserve the emphasis in the Hebrew. namely.
283–84. Contra Nestor.864. Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Bible. the uncertain pedigree of the Peshitta relative to the LXX: They ought to realise this before everything else. 99–100.16 In short. “I am a servant (of the Lord). To bring 15 Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius.1366).15 Though clearly aware of the legendary Letter of Aristeas (if not its reference to the task of the Seventy as translation of the Torah only). For the Letter of Aristeas see Chapter Four. 17 Zaharapoulos. Theodore was credited by his critics with a reluctance to concede divine inspiration even to authors of some canonical books. 13–16 (PG 86. possessing a precise knowledge of their own language and a knowledge of the divine Scriptures. “I am a Hebrew. and at the same point. elders of the people. invoking alternative versions including Syriac but preferring LXX as more faithful to the Heb.68 chapter five It is a comprehensive estimate on the part of one who has shown little deference to the alternative Greek versions. et Eutych. The translation into Greek. In this.”17 A similar criterion of the degree of interest in textual resources can hardly be applied to a preacher in estimating his exegetical rigor. cf. on the other hand. Theodore will forfeit completely the option of consulting them. Exegete and Theologian. Greer. Nor is he prepared in this later work to accept the evidence of the Syriac. a pulpit allowing limited recourse to these. Theodore—typically—does not give his preference to the LXX on the basis of its divine inspiration. The Commentary on The Twelve is not cited by these scholars in much detail. furthermore. In his next work. 16 PG 80. at least oﬀ the cuﬀ. on the creation of woman. Chrysostom is no exception when he delivers homilies on Genesis: in both the short series of eight in 386 and the longer series of sixty seven some years later he makes but one appeal to alternative versions. on the basis of his interest in textual criticism we would hardly be able to support the claim made for Theodore of the title “a forerunner of the modern biblical scholarship. like the LXX’s reading 'ibdi. Leontius. gives Theodore credit as a textual critic. . on the Twelve Prophets. as will Theodoret. was done by seventy men. thus being left to his local text and unable to detect its solecisms. his argument this time being an a priori one.” for 'ibri. Theodore of Mopsuestia. they were translated into Syriac by somebody or other (his identity is unknown to this day). that whereas the contents of the divine Scripture are composed in Hebrew. 50.” in Jonah 1:9.
that a preacher like Chrysostom does not ﬁnd it appropriate (or convenient) to cite a range of textual resources for the beneﬁt of his congregations on the challenging book of Kt¤siw.290–92. in his sixth sermon he seizes upon a variant version of Gen 2:23. under their tongue suﬀering and trouble (another version. is that of Symmachus and Theodotion. “in the net”). This is now bone of my bones and ﬂesh of my ﬂesh. they lie in ambush like a lion in his lair (another. “But they will be bruised and bent as 18 SC 433. Similarity of passages in both these series is not infrequent. They will stoop and fall down in their act of dominating the poor (another. never by name and rarely evaluated. Only now is a woman made from a man alone. bitterness and treachery. . whereas later it will not be in this manner but from both. a matter of deep interest). then.18 The alternative rendering. “useless”). especially as he had earlier made some typically pejorative remarks about “the scholars”? Whose mouth is full of cursing. Now. and it may be that the formation of womankind was a matter or particular interest (though it is not among the zhtÆmata that Theodoret’s “questioner” raises with him in the Questions on the Octateuch. and in almost identical terms it is cited in Homily 15 of the longer series. in their snare they will humiliate them (another.7–10 of Ps 10 be grateful for all the textual embellishment they were oﬀered by the preacher on these verses. to rob the poor in the act of releasing them (another. While we are not surprised. Their eyes watch for the needy. what does strike a reader of his homilies on the Psalms (if indeed they are homilies). and that by saying This is now he suggests that such a genesis would not apply also to a woman—the meaning given by another translator as well in rendering it more precisely “This once. some commentators claim that he is suggesting not simply that fact but also the manner of creation. Would the listeners to vv. They lie in wait with the rich in ambush so as to slay the innocent (another. by contrast. “as in his den”). they lie in wait to rob the poor. unlike the creation of the angels. highlighting the manner in which this particular woman (only) was formed.2. is the degree to which he treats his listeners in the didaskalei=on (classroom—or church?) to a great array of alternative readings. “lying in ambush by the halls”).” as if to say. “in release of them”). we shall note in Chapter Five.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 69 out the unique manner in which the woman is made here.
. Dorival. see Hill. 116.” And in his homilies on the obscurity of the Old Testament he will impress on his listeners that they are reading only a version of the original. he was a native Syriac speaker. “like a wisp of smoke exuding myrrh and frankincense. Mercati (relayed to us in Gilles Dorival’s similar proposal in reference to Theodoret’s Psalm Commentary) that a copyist has later inserted such variant readings?20 Chrysostom will come to acknowledge his (and his congregations’) linguistic limitations.70 chapter five they join forces with the strong against the weak”).”21 Theodoret in the next century brought several exegetical advantages to the task of commentary on the Old Testament. Though convinced of the divine inspiration of the LXX. on the Song of Songs. 21 Omelie. and defer to “those who know Hebrew. he was by nature painstaking yet concise. For other examples. he insists (sometimes needlessly—and erroneously) on oﬀering the Hebrew. not feeling a youthful need to impress with a display of (false) erudition. he still insists on oﬀering textual variants. he had an openness to achievements of scholars of another school. in his ﬁrst work. he is wrong to criticize as “a servile rendering of the Hebrew” the phrase in 3:6. “L’apport des chaînes exégètiques grecques à une réédition des Hexaples d’Origène (à propos du Psaume 118). they (and himself ) must expect some diﬃculty: “It is not possible to transfer the clarity naturally contained in the words when moving to another language.” 62.137. 6–8. he could fault it. St John Chrysostom. Do you see them turned into a wild beast?19 And on the same psalm. Commentary on the Psalms I.10. evidently referring to that diﬀerent form of it found in the Hexapla.” preferring the version of the verse 19 PG 55. 20 G. He will also include “the Septuagint” among the variant readings. again in haste to get through Ps 46. if not always correctly. Are we to imagine the youthful preacher (we oﬀered some indications above of Chrysostom’s youth in this work) standing before his audience with an array of material about him as he tries to impress them with his erudition? Or should we accept the suggestion of G. and hence while appreciating that the LXX is a gift from divine providence. though in haste to complete commentary on what is to him only the second half of a long Ps 9 in the LXX. as on Ps 7:9–10. He was already a bishop.
113:1. 116:9). 23 22 . It is also cited by Theodoret in connection with Ps 75:6. but it would take little grasp of that language to enable him to notice phrases in those titles missing from the original (as with Pss 31. attributes mention of it as an index of the degree of Origen’s inﬂuence on Theodoret.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 71 by Aquila and Symamchus. 68:2. citing it on 8:6. like Chrysostom’s. 71). 66. 70. 24 So Guinot. identiﬁes it as a Palestinian revision of some books. but it does not appear in the Hexapla. cf. L’Exégèse. 65. one might get the impression he had some knowledge of Hebrew from his invoking it frequently enough. to detect the solecisms of the LXX in psalm titles. 215.” Theodoret’s use of the versions of The Three has been taken both as an index of his zeal as a textual critic24 and as so mechanical as to suggest (in the view cited above from Dorival) the later addition of a copyist. Les devanciers. nor the Septuagint in the Hexapla used the plural ‘in the holy places. and also (in connection with 5:11 and 6:12) that further column of Origen referred to as “the ﬁfth edition.22 in which he found also that form of the LXX alternative to his Lucianic text. In upholding a singular form he ﬁnds in the LXX of Ps 74:3 he says. as elsewhere it is to Hebrew and Syriac together this Syriac speaker makes reference (cf. L’Exégèse. shows his access to a copy of the Hexapla. Theodore would have done well not to cast scorn on that Or to texts citing the alternative versions.23 Likewise in the Psalms Commentary he will make ample use of the textual resources oﬀered in a copy of the Hexapla. nor the other translators. 177–80.’” The rogue phrase “of one of the sabbaths” in the title to Ps 24 he seems to attribute to a still further form of the LXX. In the preface to the Psalms Commentary he examines the interpretation “always” given by Aquila to the puzzling rubric diãcalma found in some psalms before declining to accept it on the grounds that “I consider it unjustiﬁed to dismiss so many people of such caliber (the Seventy) and rely on the opinion of one single person. remarking that he found it in “some copies (ént¤grafa). Guinot. who seem to have omitted the phrase.” another version that Eusebius and Epiphanius claimed he had discovered in Palestine. Reference to these alternative versions. which he cites a dozen times in the work. note 5 above. 266–70.” yet sometimes his citation of The Three seems mechanical and pointless. If one ignores his failure. Pss 41:1. though he shows little eﬀect of Origen’s textual criticism (637). Barthélemy. “Neither the Hebrew.
They also have the advantage of trustworthiness from the point of view of time: before the Incarnation of our Savior they transposed the divine Scripture into the Greek tongue without any reason for distortion. as Theodoret shows by capitalizing on it often to the beneﬁt of his textual criticism. I am amazed at the eﬀrontery of Jews in not accepting the prophecy about the virgin. they claim. “I was at the Oubal. This degree of interest in textual issues emerges similarly in Theodoret’s other commentaries. in the Isaiah Commentary he defends the LXX’s rendering 'almah in 7:14 as “virgin. on the other hand. in addition to this. 'abul. as in a case where their Jewishness makes them suspect. that the testimony of the Seventy men is more reliable than that given by three. but in disputed cases cannot compare. Aquila and Symmachus.” that the Seventy are (mistakenly) reading. “I seemed to be standing at the gate (some translators rendering it this way). there is also the fact that divine grace worked with them to arrive at a consensus. of necessity and out of his conviction of the divine inspiration of the Seventy.” They ought to have understood. For example.” he oﬀers as a paraphrase.” thus revealing he is aware of the LXX’s pÊlh—but unaware that it is rather Heb.” Now. the alternative versions of The Three are frequently cited. on the other hand. especially when it enjoys agreement in such a great number. or makes two attempts at the one phrase (as in 21:30). though seeming to be aware of the LXX text as well. “gate.72 chapter five dialect of Aramaic. Theodoret failing to recognize the doublet and commenting on both phrases. Theodotion. and his tight focus on its 25 SC 276. ﬁrst. it is the text of Theodotion he is commenting on. His local form of the LXX enjoys his esteem. when at 8:2 he ﬁnds Theodotion retaining a transliterated Hebrew form (for “river”) in its version. and adopting the Jewish mentality they distorted the prophecies about the Lord. rendered it not virgin but “young woman. Aquila.25 His local form of the LXX can present him with particular problems. Symmachus and Theodotion. where it often capitulates before obscure terms and settles for a transliteration. . translated the divine Scripture after the Lord’s coming. In Daniel.286–88. Even his knowledge of Syriac does not allow him to advert to the book’s survival partly in Aramaic. as in the case of Ezekiel.
” Theodoret ﬁnds the term transliterated in his text. .1 on Leviticus dealing with the burnt oﬀering of birds in 1:17 in the course of a long account of Jewish sacriﬁces. he goes to the trouble of explaining. consulted by a commentator lacking but one critical asset in treating of the text of the Old Testament. the aim always being “to make clear to readers what requires clariﬁcation. for ‘crop’ Theodotion put ‘gullet’ and Aquila ‘oesophagus. Even an obscure translator. namely. sometimes to excess. 156.27 It is an impressive array of textual resources. Theodoret retains his interest in textual detail and his willingness to deal with it. as outlined in Chapter Five. a knowledge of Hebrew. 44. and as skopos in Syriac. for what those practicing archery normally aim at. but refers to other resources: The term amataran I found occurring in that form in the lexicon of Hebrew words. Now. the Peshitta and even the (Old) Latin (or Vulgate?). 26 27 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. let alone a range of translations. Their being omitted also in our text of the Jeremiah Commentary may be attributable to its peculiar process of transmission. is cited on 2 Sam 13:18 in connection with the robe worn by Tamar. Although the Questions are a work of his declining years. in the incident in 1 Sam 20:20 when Jonathan conveys information to David by shooting arrows at a “target. In Q. the alternative Greek versions are cited often. as tãfrow (trench) in Greek.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 73 puzzling “historical” references discourages him from further interest in textual matters. If in the Questions on the Octateuch he invokes Syriac only once. Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Reges et Paralipomena.26 Readers could have felt the anatomical detail itself to be otiose.’ it receives the food and conveys it to the rest of the body—hence the Septuagint’s calling it ‘crop’ in being a receptacle for food. by name Josephus (not the historian). as fossatum in Latin. including (beyond the Antiochene text) the form of the LXX in the Hexapla. the alternative versions rarely cited.” To this end Theodoret even accesses a lexicon of Hebrew terms.
The Jewish People and their Sacred Scriptures in the Christian Bible. however. as “making clear to readers what requires clariﬁcation” in Old Testament material. its author and its roots in history. St Meinrad: Grail Publications. can resist such ﬁndings. cf. ÙnÒmata. by comparison with commentators of another school who stayed at this level only as long as necessary before moving to a level removed from history. the text in its ﬁnal form may bear indications of later editing or assembling of diverse elements by a compiler.28 Though exegesis and interpretation at Antioch were conspicuous for an attachment to the text. with a deep conviction of the involvement also of a divine author are naturally loath to peer beyond the surface for all these clues to human tampering. 28 . such that layers are detectable in the material. also searching behind the purported or pseudonymous author for clues to the identity of the real author(s). Vatican City: Libreria Editrice Vaticana. and most assiduously striven for by him in textual matters. Those who approach a biblical text. As well. This conservative attitude contrasts with the more informed and positive approach of the same body’s (1964 Instruction on the Historical Truth of the Gospels and) 2001 statement bearing on the Old Testament. prãgmata. 4. In his extant work. rather than facts.74 chapter five B. 121). the Antiochene commentators in our period diﬀered in their degree of readiness to take account of the history of the text itself. that is. Centuries of investigation have led modern exegetes to suspect that the superﬁcial impression of the ﬁnal form of a biblical work being the original work of a single author belies the facts of a history of development involving many anonymous hands. the response of Rome’s Pontiﬁcal Biblical Commission in 1908 to a question about the possibility of recognizing multiple authorship in the book of Isaiah: “In the negative” (Rome and the Study of Scripture. biblical commentators have examined as well the history of the text and its author(s).. Authorship and text history In pursuit of the exegetical goal formulated by Theodoret. Diodore admits he is to some extent transmitting what “I also in my own case had received from others. the Commentary on the Psalms.”29 Among these predecessors in Antioch would have ﬁgured the bishop Eustathius whom we saw taking Origen to task for attending to terms. They have thus been encouraged to examine a biblical (or any ancient) text for signs of multiple authorship. 29 Commentarii. e. sometimes giving rise to discrepancies in detail.g. for an approach that used the text and its history only as a Ecclesiastical authorities.
David was in receipt of divine inspiration in composing all the psalms. as we saw in Chapter Three. he simply observes. not as originally recited. not however as a whole book but scattered in ones and twos and perhaps also threes. on Ps 51 he remarks. Yet the titles are not worth taking seriously. 3–5. a Temple singer. The actual compilation of his Psalter. he does allow to have taken place in the course of history. and are consistently ignored by him. he dismisses the possibility that this attribution may involve authorship: It is likely that it was given by David to Jeduthun. as we note in Chapter four.31 Further. Gregory of Nyssa’s Treatise on the Inscriptions of the Psalms. Now. Whether rationalist. it is worth marveling at the grace given to David of foretelling so many years before not only the events but also people’s ways of thinking at that time. however. R. he says in accord with 2 Esdras 14. the present order of the psalms. On the other hand. 30 31 32 “Diodore. Heine. for singing—though the composition of the psalms was by David and no one else. When the title of Ps 39 makes mention of Jeduthun. Commentarii. the psalm titles lack any authenticity—an opinion most patristic commentators did not share. Cf. and being assembled as they were found.32 In his own work on the Psalter. arises from the book’s being lost in the Babylonian captivity and found later in the time of Ezra. developing even further the traditional analogy of such a charism based on the opening verses of Ps 45. while he gratuitously sees Ps 14 referring to the eighth century events involving Sennacherib and the Rabshakeh.” 991. . he wants to allow for reference in certain psalms to historical events up to the time of the Maccabees. E. far from letting the possibility arise that this could suggest multiple authors of the Psalms at various times.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 75 springboard to move to senses beyond the factual. he insists.30 Diodore combines a belief in the Psalms’ composition solely by the divinely-inspired David with a denial of authenticity to their titles. or simply “raisonnable” as Bardy prefers. 6. Diodore’s dutiful student Theodore predictably relays the positions he had received from his mentor.
in his view the movement of thought in Ps 75:3 is interrupted because the phrase The earth was wasted is inserted in the middle. and a readiness to make his own adjustment to the text of a prophet if it disappoints his expectations. 334.76 chapter five At no stage have we given the impression of being dictated to by the titles. it is obvious he also mentioned God. and doubtless under the inﬂuence of his contemporary Didymus in Alexandria. Three days more. and we said as much about this as was necessary in the preface before commentary on the text. on the one hand. calling them to repentance. his failure to grasp the author’s satirical purpose compels him to embellish the text of 3:4 about the reluctant prophet’s call for repentance in Nineveh (the LXX exacerbating his unease by reading “Three days more” instead of “Forty” under the inﬂuence of the previous verse). also brings out that he did not carelessly say only. 186. the prophet making the insertion with a view to the metre34 —a rash claim in view of his ignorance of the language of the original. between an elevated notion of prophetic inspiration.33 While on his principles he would not admit interpolations in the text. to re-arrange the psalmist’s text. the Lord of all. The verse. on meeting the word for prophetic oracle. So he rewrites the text (as Theodoret will do when he similarly ﬁnds unacceptable Paul’s teaching on the gratuity of divine mercy). Hill. ékolouy¤a. not even letting the listeners know by whom he was sent. Rather. accepting only those we found to be true. and Nineveh will be destroyed: they could never have believed in God on the basis of this remark alone. and said he had been sent by him. The men of Nineveh believed in God. on the Twelve Prophets. When he comes to Jonah. Cf. There is a similar dissonance in his next work. brieﬂy accepting a notion of ecstatic possession of biblical authors not generally acceptable to Antioch thinking. That preface is not extant. l∞mma. In Chapter Three we saw Theodore. 502. from a completely unknown foreigner threatening them with destruction and adding nothing further.” . and he delivered the message of destruction. in his text of Nahum 1:1. the youthful Theodore is happy on the basis merely of sequence. by contrast. “Theodoret wrestling with Romans.35 33 34 35 Le commentaire. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. on the other. Le commentaire.
This is the way he came to Adam. perhaps having had his conviction of their Davidic authorship weakened. he does not evince any spirit of rationalist criticism imbibed from master Diodore: he not only accepts the psalm titles. this the way he was entertained by Abraham. but spends time treating them (not as mere liturgical rubrics. however. taking occasion from commentary on that invitation in the opening of Ps 45. perhaps harking from the same period. “ﬂutes. In the sermons on Genesis. that after the block of Pss 120–34 classed as “Songs of the Steps (or Ascent)” that are attributed to the people in exile. which occasionally escapes him. But since our nature took a turn for evil. defects—and consequent emendation—are not entirely out of the question. On the other hand. though the name David continues to appear in later psalms. and moved to an almost extremely opposite position of authorial composition as a journeyman job. then. he rejected it as akin to Plato’s description of the pagan seers. though Chrysostom does not proceed to follow that line. nehiloth.” While at ﬁrst toying with the notion of ecstatic possession. So his congregation is treated at the opening to Ps 5 to a lengthy disquisition on inheritances under (the LXX’s and) his own mistaken impression that the term in the title derives. I tell of my works to the king. as he states in a striking simile in the ﬁrst of them. we saw in Chapter Three. mãnteiw. On the Psalms. not from Heb. at long last he sent us letters as though we were absent for a long time and he intended to re-establish the former friendship . Chrysostom did more than betray his views on the inspiration of biblical authors. At the beginning. Moses is unquestionably the inspired author of that text. especially if he has been schooled at the feet of a biblical critic.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 77 There are limits to respect for the biblical text. Though one does not expect a preacher on biblical texts to spend time in his pulpit discussing exegetical detail with his generally unlettered congregation (it was conceded above). as it were. but) as relevant components that need—despite his inability to detect LXX solecisms—explicating.” It is noteworthy. my tongue the pen of a rapid scribe. “inherit. God communicates directly with human beings as far as it is possible for human beings to hear. “My heart belched a good word. he may be expected to have formed an opinion.” but from nahal. on the other hand. this the way he rebuked Cain. “like a shipwright building a ship”—a notion that might allow for an author’s assemblage of materials from various quarters. Chrysostom ceases mentioning him or commenting on the titles. and separated itself by a lengthy exile. this the way he spoke with Noah.
38 The Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages. are accepted without question. “Theodore of Mopsuestia as a representative of the Antiochene school. it is not surprising if his attention to some of the expressions or interpretation or depth of insight was careless. for what reason. Cf. as will be noted in Chapter Ten—this moral dimension has been seen as militating against a critical spirit.” 490: “Where Chrysostom is essentially the preacher who makes use of the work of biblical interpretation. the estimate of Photius in the ninth century: “Now. In Homily 20 he takes seriously the listeners’ presumed diﬃculty about the unnamed wives of Cain and his descendants in Gen 4. and treats it at the same level. 39 E. respectively). Letters and edicts. a text that is concerned simply with “tracing the generations between Noah and Adam. would distinguish as Yahwist and Priestly. he never at any stage neglected what the ability of the listeners dictated and had relevance to their beneﬁt and welfare” (Bibliotheca 174).78 chapter five through an epistle. A. it was Moses who brought them.”38 We saw him passing oﬀ diﬀerent creation stories in his Genesis homilies as mere repetition on the Spirit’s part.2. resting upon a document hypothesis. 40 PG 56.”39 not supplying personal histories. Speiser.” he was “at the same time the author who could teach his readers least about Antiochene exegesis. of course.37 Beryl Smalley cites Julian of Eclanum’s summation a generation later that Chrysosom proceeds “rather by exhortation than by exposition. Although his preaching role in the tradition of the faith in Antioch encouraged him to apply the Bible to the lives of his congregation— a feature we ﬁnd missing in the commentaries coming from the desks of his fellow Antiochenes.43 of his Questions on the Octateuch. to whom it refers. when and how. 37 36 .1. after all. and his attempts to reconcile Cainite and Sethite genealogies in Gen 4 & 5 (which modern commentators. 36. Genesis. in connection with whom.” and it has become customary to agree with her that though “he was by far the best known representative of Antiochene principles in the West. Theodoret ﬁnds the issue still a burning one in Q.”40 he cannot be quoted for SC 433. 18.156.143–50. Theodore is ﬁrst and foremost biblical scholar and commentator. While in his homily on Jer 10:23 and its (and other verses’) frequent misapplication he insists on the need to give attention to “the whole context. Extant OT works of the respective commentators do not completely support the verdict of Maurice Wiles. While it was God who sent the letters. by whom.” A less pastoral manner at one’s desk does not necessarily ensure a more critical approach.36 He will repeat the ﬁgure to the same eﬀect in the eighth sermon (the letter now an imperial edict) and in Homily 2 on this book.
Golden Mouth. continuous. Chrysostom’s (eventual) listeners to his commentary/notes on Proverbs would have appreciated. rendered more obscure by the faulty LXX translation. of the remainder.29–32. however. he accepts the order of the sapiential books in the order in which they occur in the LXX to indicate order of composition (as well as parting company with Origen to accept Pauline authorship of Hebrews). he comments at that halfway point. let alone a sequence. It is perhaps an index of Origen’s inﬂuence in his Commentary on the Song of Songs at the beginning of his career that Theodoret shows an interest in the history of the text of that work and the Old Testament generally. Defending the Song against charges of factuality. He accepts it as a single. some remarks on the manner in which this collections of collections was compiled may have allowed his listeners (and the commentator himself ) to desist from looking for a pattern—but no such guidance on the history of the text is forthcoming. which in Theodoret’s view is a canonical work. Never one to shirk an exegetical challenge.41 Just such an analysis as he recommends in the case of the Jeremiah text. The most he is prepared to admit is the diﬀerence in style after chapter 6 between those tales and the revelations. on the one hand. In this he is following an account found in 2 Esdras 14. 41 Kelly.” 42 PG 81.”42 His historical criticism. . collection of previously existing haggadic tales is not an admissible view.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 79 looking at the history of the text itself. in the series of disjointed items in “The proverbs of Solomon” (Prv 10–22). on the other. is ﬁtful: though in that same preface he speaks of “psalmists” in the plural. Theodoret in his preface traces its composition from Solomon through a rewriting by Ezra (“ﬁlled with the divine Spirit”) following loss of the book at the hands of Manasseh. He struggles to ﬁnd meaning. however. épokalÊceiw. nor is editorial insertion. original work by one author. Theodoret ﬁnds another in his next work on Daniel. overstates the eﬀect of Chrysostom’s (and the Fathers’ generally) conviction of inspiration of the biblical authors: “This assumption eﬀectively blocked any open-minded examination of the bible. “ranked by the blessed Fathers with the divine Scriptures. A letter sent by God through nominated emissaries has not been subject to tampering in the course of delivery. and of unbridled eroticism. 95.
Ethan or the Sons of Korah.” He is strangely less ﬂexible about the psalm titles—“I consider it rash and quite foolhardy to brand them as spurious”—but prepared to admit that “people of a later age ﬁxed the order” of the psalms.1116).44 While in the preface to his work on the Song Theodoret had been able to speak in passing of psalmists in the plural. 45 PG 80. forced to address it only when the text immediately presents Daniel and the young men in a favorable light: He mentions their self-control and sound values.861–64.1276). 44 43 . not indulging in selfgloriﬁcation but proposing a beneﬁcial lesson to those prepared to accept beneﬁt —so there is no problem. “A psalm for Asaph.”47 Though he could PG 81.668.43 The anomaly of the author also being the central character he generally bypasses. as it were.” when he comes to comment on it. but I for my part have no strong view on these points: what does it matter to me whether all come from (David) or some come from them. which some predecessors had accepted. as long as it is clear that they all composed under the inﬂuence of the divine Spirit. Theodoret is equally ﬂexible (and undiscriminating) on the authorship of Ps 73. so he was prepared to concede it also in the case of the oracles in Ezekiel.45 Prophetic material in the Old Testament poses several critical judgements for a commentator. While with typical ﬂexibility allowing for alternative views. he notes. On Dan 1:5–6 (PG 81. the question of authorship naturally arises in addressing the Psalter.46 In comment on Jeremiah 31:34 he recognizes the work of compilers of prophetic oracles to be distinct from their authors: “It is customary with the divine Scripture to mix the prophecies together. he applies a conservative (and uncritical) criterion: “Let the judgement of the majority prevail: most historians say the Psalms are David’s. Some psalm titles suggest authorship by others like Jeduthun.80 chapter five Having recounted those things as a historian (suggrafeÊw). As Theodoret had admitted lack of an original order of psalms in the Psalter. 47 PG 81. he now begins to convey the predictions he learnt about through the revelations.1412. 46 On Ezek 30:20 (PG 81.
48 The book of Jeremiah presents commentators with many texts whose history is complicated and debated. 362. by contrast (at least in the text we have). nomoy°thw)—as inspired author. Nicholson). In his replies Theodoret generally does not read the clues to that eﬀect: the title Deuteronomy means not a second law. 98–101. for a range of patristic comments on the nature of the book. Thiel. Siquans. but where Theodoret cannot allow himself to become distracted. Der Deuteronomiumkommentar des Theodoret von Kyros. Weippert) and give us direct access to a stance of the historical prophet Jeremiah. or to suppose that these verses are entirely Jeremianic (Weiser. 49 48 . he explains. It is true that Moses as author of those books is presented here in various literary roles (beyond lawgiver. SC 315. is content to reduce the passage to a precis. of course. Leviticus and Numbers” for those who had grown up in the wilderness and did not hear the ﬁrst one. McKane summarises possible approaches thus: It is doubtful whether the right way of approaching 16. a modern commentaror like W.50 but suggests that the book “contains a summary of the legislation and the doings in Exodus.122. and later they were put together to form one book.49 Theodoret. for instance. not because of an interpolation or the impact of the exile on a Deuteronomistic editor.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 81 not acknowledge multiplicity of authorship in the book of Isaiah. 367. On 16:1–9 bearing on Jeremiah’s prophetic celibacy.1–9 is to distinguish between a Jeremianic core and a Deuteronomistic elaboration of that core (Rudolph. there are more curses than blessings in Deut 27–28. that former and latter prophecies were not made at the one time. but because “promises of freedom do not beneﬁt wicked servants to the same extent as threats of chastisement. rather. others at another. he does allow (in commenting on 51:9) for an editor’s ﬁnal collection of material composed at diﬀerent periods: It must be understood. A. some were made at one time. Questions about tå êpora of the Octateuch often focused on textual discrepancies arising from a complicated process of composition and editing that left loose ends and suggested diﬀerent layers.” Balaam’s changes of heart in Num 22–24 are not due to any diﬀerence in authorship. 50 Cf. Jeremiah 1–25.
ﬂstoriografÒw—which might be taken as a code for a reserved admission of multiple authorship.” 53 The role played by Eusebius in mediating Origen’s thought has been thought most inﬂuential in the case of the Antiochenes. R. he has no choice but to concede the point: citation from a book of Jashar by the author of Josh 10:13 leads him to conclude rightly. taking the material from another book. Diodore could not match Origen’s interest in the text of the Old Testament. As founder of the school.82 chapter five profÆthw. Theodoret again concludes. “Hermeneutics. The Inﬂuence of Greek Ideas on Christianity. proﬁting from this further exercise in tradition criticism. 280. “It is clear from this that somebody else of a later age had written this book. Brown. like the psalmist and (latter) prophets. on the other hand. who felt free to incorporate the formers’ work simply as leftovers. suggrafeÊw.” It might alternatively be claimed that Antiochene exegesis/hermeneutics has been undervalued on the basis of theological prejudice. 82.” 399: “Der Einﬂuß des Eusebius von Cäsarea auf die Antiochener is so gros daß man von einem ‘eusebianischen Kriterium’ in ihrer exegetischen Technik reden kann. Edwin Hatch. in Chapter Eight we shall examine whether their interpretative skills—probably the true focus of that generalization—measure up to such a claim. At times. “Das formale Verfahren. paraleipÒmena—hence the title of the work in the LXX. Cf. we have grounds enough in the work of his followers for discouraging any wish to “heroicize”52 the school of Antioch as exegetical in the strict sense. but with the compilers. I believe this book was written later. claims of our period that “the question of exegesis became entangled with the question of orthodoxy. only Theodoret in a later age proﬁting from it (principally through Eusebius). later re-named Jerusalem.53 Attention by the Antiochenes to textual Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. as Viciano maintains (citing Manlio Simonetti). whereas 2 Sam 5:6–9 attributes to David the capture of Jebus. a name it had later after being called Jebus.” 52 51 . as simple composer (not necessarily uninspired). 1154: “The exegetical school of Antioch has been too naively heroicized as the champion of critical exegesis. my evidence being that the narrative refers to this city as Jerusalem. original authors. While we possess only fragments of Diodore’s Questions on the Octateuch.” NJBC.51 The concession comes more easily to him in the case of Chronicles because he is no longer dealing with prof∞tai. suggegrafÒtew.” Judg 1:8 speaks of the people taking Jerusalem. 289–90. as historian/chronicler/annalist. E.
also discouraged textual analysis. was also generally (if not a “blockage. the history in a text was of greater relevance than the history of that text. especially considering their linguistic limitations.” in Kelly’s term) a deterrent from scrutiny into diversity of authorship and layers of composition of these letters sent by God and delivered by Moses or David.exegetical skills and resources in antioch 83 details of the works they were reading was generally ﬁtful. as in the case of Chrysostom in his pulpit. . We should now take stock of the degree to which these Antiochene commentators did present to their ﬂock the principal bodies of Old Testament composition. A ministry of the spoken Word. While Theodoret will admit that prophetic oracles may have been assembled after a prophet’s ministry. again they were indebted to Origen for any use of the resources oﬀered in the Hexapla. he is less ready to recognize from textual discrepancies in Octateuch or Kingdoms layers in a text deriving from redactional or editorial work. Their deep conviction of the divine inspiration of the authors of Old Testament books. prof∞tai. even uninformed.
” Diodore quoted from 2 Tim 3:16 in beginning his Commentary on the Psalter. and resisted attempts by Marcionites and other dualists to have it expunged from the scriptures sacred to the community.” 2 1 .”2 We should now. if not exclusively.1 and the author of the Pastorals in that text meant primarily.1): “While the books are from them. it was read privately to the family in the intimacy of the Christian home.188. it formed the subject of homiletics and catechesis at various stages of Christian formation. both text and meaning belong to us. This ready acceptance of Jewish scriptures was due to the recognition of “a kinship of the Law with grace. leaving to Chapter Seven an analysis of their characteristic approach to the task of commentary. Commentarii. “All scripture is inspired by God and useful for teaching. the treasure of the books now belongs to us.” and of a consensus and harmony between the testaments Old and New. Cf. examine the extent of commentary on these texts bequeathed to us by the Antiochenes that has survived the ravages of time. 3. In the view of the commentators. In both. Chrysostom’s second sermon on Genesis (SC 433.CHAPTER SIX OLD TESTAMENT COMMENTARY IN ANTIOCH For all its Jewish character. therefore. God communicated his revelation through a process of ımil¤a in which could be seen a gracious gesture of sugkatãbasiw akin to that visible in the Incarnation of the Word in the person of Jesus. It was read aloud in a liturgy of the Word in church according to a lectionary no longer known to us. its inevitable or intentional obscurity. if the text is from them. the scriptures inherited from and shared with the Jewish community—even if “the interpretation is ours. such an introduction to these Jewish scriptures was essential for a grasp of Antioch’s worldview. We should begin. the faithful felt at ease with the Old Testament. For all its obscurity. the Old Testament was introduced to the Christian community in Antioch in the process of tradition of the faith.
with the Psalms. M. .1. whether at home.” whereas his listeners in the classroom. Dahood. he admits that at Easter time “the Fathers prescribed the singing” of v. We know from Chrysostom that the opening verse of Ps 42 was customarily sung as a responsorium. is still substantial. “You give them food in due season. 4 PG 55. further. you can ﬁnd most people making little or no reference to the other divine Scriptures. ÍpakoÆ. Theodore. if less complete.” Dahood himself ﬁnds it necessary to have recourse to Ugaritic to decipher some of the linguistic challenges of the Psalter—a resource not available to commentators in Antioch in our period. Job and Proverbs. let us rejoice and be glad.1). Chrysostom and Theodoret. on which we fortunately have commentary by all four major commentators: Diodore. didaskale›on. in public places or while traveling.86 chapter six as they did. “This is the day the Lord has made. Theodoret tells us. Psalms Of all the Old scriptures it was the Psalter that was felt to have a claim to pride of place in a pastoral—and exegetical3—scale of priorities. xxiv–xxvi.5 The consequence of this pride of place was that budding exegetes of the time considered it incumbent on them early in their career 3 The Psalter even in the original language is conceded to oﬀer an extraordinary degree of diﬃculty to exegetes.24. On Ps 145 he speaks of initiates (probably in the course of a eucharistic liturgy) singing as an antiphon v. if not for singing.6 for singing.328. gain serenity for themselves from the harmony of the poetry. while we only have individual commentaries (by Theodoret or Chrysostom) on the Song of Songs.15. 5 Praef. are said to “read” the psalm (PG 55. Even less complete is attention to the Octateuch and the historical books. and reap beneﬁt for themselves through this enjoyment. (PG 80. Psalms 1. by lector and congregation.860). whereas the spiritual harmonies of the divinelyinspired David many people frequently call to mind. A. and that while in the case of Ps 118 he felt free to nominate v. Commentary on the prophets.”4 Even in their private lives. in the view of a commentator on its linguistic features. The liturgy regularly included (verses from) a psalm for recitation.464. versions like the LXX “are not always reliable witnesses to what the biblical poets intended.
9 Diodore is familiar with alternate recitation of psalm verses in monastic style. Hill.8 Whether it was his ﬁrst work is uncertain. Recherches et bilan. though having good intentions. 116). Marie-Josèphe Rondeau lists eighteen Greek commentaries from the third to the ﬁfth centuries. Mention is apparently made of the persecution during Julian’s time in Antioch in 362–63 during which Diodore distinguished himself by his vigorous opposition. the readers being the “brethren.6 Included among them are the works— oral and written—of all four Antiochenes in our period. 142.10 6 Les commentaires patristiques du Psautier (III e–V e siècles). he gives the other response in the form of a question.” 10 Commentarii. it bears the marks of his period as director of the asketerion in Antioch before his becoming bishop of Tarsus in 378. to put it more plainly. then they fell under the power of the authorities. When all of a sudden persecution came upon them in a time of tranquillity. Patrology 3. as for example what happened in the case of the martyrs. Since such verses had to be recited antiphonally. editor of the ﬁrst ﬁfty one psalms (CCG 6). Who is this king of glory? (v. A Lord mighty and powerful. 8 Cf. and by external inﬂuences to what befalls us unexpectedly from without. normally called accidental by externs—or rather. 304. then they were subjected to torture and often. in comment on Ps 24 (still similarly recited as an invitatory psalm in modern breviaries) he remarks. “His Master’s Voice: Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Psalms. 1 Les travaux des pères grecs et latin sur le Psautier. poems. as it is his sole fully extant work in Greek from an output that embraced all the Old Testament.7 we are particularly fortunate to have the Psalms Commentary of Diodore. all happily extant (if only partly in Greek in the case of Theodore. is . for which he was banished by Julian’s successor Valens in 372. what befalls us by way of temptation and an onset of the devil. We are the beneﬁciaries of this patristic estimation of the importance of the Psalter (surpassed only by the Gospels).old testament commentary in antioch 87 to oﬀer their ﬂock some explication of these ancient. Rondeau lists also eight major Latin commentaries and eight minor.8) They then utter their part in response. and because his inﬂuence is patent in his pupils’ commentaries. J.” édelfo¤. they succumbed to the great number of tortures and fell into the indeliberate sin of denial. perhaps in vogue in the askêtêrion. and the tone and stance magisterial. Quasten.-M. 7 Cf. a Lord powerful in war. and not all critically edited).” 9 In comment on Ps 19:12–13 Diodore remarks (Commentarii. Even if but the merest fragments survive of commentary by Eustathius. and often obscure. “By hidden sins he refers to the situation with lust in which we are overcome. Olivier.
The psalms have incurred this problem from the book’s being lost in the Babylonian captivity and found later in the time of Ezra. he speaks of them primarily as a text. but for life’s inevitable sorrows the Psalms are “a most helpful remedy.88 chapter six The preface also lays out prescriptively in textbook fashion the principles of interpretation to be followed in the case of any such biblical text. 11 Cf. Olivier will return the compliment by voicing reservations about the transmission of the Psalms Commentary of Theodore edited by Devreesse. which we shall consider in detail in Chapter Eight. haphazardly. nor do they feel called to act as spiritual gurus. not as songs.11 While authorship of the Psalms is not up for debate (he is no rationalist. 991. 14 Commentarii. . not as originally recited. Bardy warned us above). 170. are quite ridiculous.13 This is due. Theodoret in introducing his commentary on the Song of Songs will expand it to involve actual composition of the lost Scriptures (on the basis of 2 Esdras 14. They have an instructive and moral value (hence his citation of 2 Tim 3:16–17). and being assembled as they were found. and you would be unable to control yourself if you considered the superﬁciality of the titles. metropolitan of Nicea. too. cf. to the way the “book of Psalms” (Diodore and other Antiochenes are unaware of a ﬁve-fold division) was compiled. are in most cases faulty. on the other hand. the compilers of the psalms mostly guessing at their connection and not placing them by meaning. Only Devreesse remains unconvinced. Hence the titles. Such a role for Ezra is mentioned by Origen and Eusebius.” 12 Diodore. Chapter Two).” As we shall see in Chapter Ten. Much of Olivier’s introduction is devoted to establishing Diodore’s authorship of this work that appears in the best manuscript (for political reasons) under the name of Anastasius III. not however as a whole book but scattered in ones and twos and perhaps also threes. 13 Commentarii. Though Diodore is familiar with the singing of the Psalms. “Diodore of Tarsus as spiritual director. to a lesser degree doctrinal or ascetical: there may be people who recite them in times of joy.14 not expected to complete the critical edition of Diodore’s work. mystical rapture by those who read and pray the Psalms is not envisaged by Antiochene pastors.12 he is quite dismissive of the psalm titles: The psalms’ titles. he says. Hill. 6.
Pro defensione trium capitulorum 3.1364. Be this true or false. however. It may have been from Diodore that his most dutiful pupil Theodore took the lead to make a commentary on the Psalter his ﬁrst work. accepting only those we found to be true. as in the case of the title to Ps 8 containing the intriguing Heb.” he remarks on Ps 51).” eliciting some earlier comments which Theodore bypasses with some hauteur. too. 103–104).602). He had still to learn that dependence solely on one’s mentor does not make for sound commentary: hard work and a little humility are also necessary if one is to earn the title The Interpreter. then in Greek Pss 33–61—“une série d’extraits équivalents à une tradition directe. xv. 8 (PG 86. we regret that we do not have more of the Commentary extant: Devreesse assembles from the catenae Pss 1–31 in a ﬁfth century Latin version. et Eutych. because we are interested rather in arriving at the psalm’s meaning. Still.”16 Certainly his next work. and certainly also the Psalms Commentary shows signs of immaturity. and (admittedly with Diodore’s encouragement) the psalm titles are ignored (“at no stage have we given the impression of being dictated to by the titles. He adopts a somewhat superior attitude: false claims of semitic science are made. ou même une exégèse continue”17— and Pss 62–81 also in Greek. commentary and hermeneutics.old testament commentary in antioch 89 The further signiﬁcance of this and other aspects of the work will be explored in the following chapters on Antiochene. Contra Nestor. chasing up textual details to background his text—a strength of Theodoret’s—is beneath him. Predecessors’ views are curtly dismissed. “The fellow was no more than eighteen years of age when he took to subjecting the divine Scriptures to drunken abuse. term Gittith in which the LXX saw the word Gat for “winepress.8)—though Rondeau ﬁnds this “une exagération malveillante” (Les commentaires I. 16 15 . 6 (PL 67. there seems no particular need for us to settle this.15 and a less objective statement as to the author’s age from Leontius of Byzantium. in the absence of the preface he wrote we have the word of Facundus of Hermianae on its pride of place. 17 Le commentaire de Théodore de Mopsueste sur les psaumes. contains documentation almost exclusively from the Psalter. on The Twelve.
Old Testament Homilies 3. rising at times to the heights. St John Chrysostom. 22 Cf. (Is it possible Chrysostom’s didaskale›on is in fact a church? The occasion is clearly non-eucharistic. He is given to that youthful display of false erudition we see in Theodore’s Commentary. John Chrysostom and His Times I. Hill. A reader of Theodoret’s Commentary on Ezekiel (of ch. Commentary on the Psalms 1. The liturgy oﬀered the preacher in Antioch other opportunities to treat of (verses from) individual psalms. From the knowledge we have of ancient stenographic resources. Patrology 3.” St John Chrysostom. somewhat pointlessly citing alternative versions and even venturing to quote the Hebrew—sometimes erroneously. . too.90 chapter six There is internal evidence that the Psalms Commentary of Diodore’s other pupil Chrysostom. a classic text for Antiochene spirituality. which can after all be manufactured.” But. e. perhaps after 386 and before Chrysostom’s appointment to Constantinople in 397. as did Photius in the ninth century. 435. 222.) occasionally gets the impression of orality.”20 These are stringent requirements to establish orality. Les commentaires I.22 18 Bibliotheca 174. . Hill.) 20 C. “Ps 41(42). 1–41. spontaneity.”21 Why it is that not all psalms are included in the present collection (beginning at Ps 4) is unclear.19 His biographer Dom Baur disputes the oral character of the homilies on the grounds that we do not have both speaker’s text and stenographer’s copy. as we saw above—whereas in his Homily Four on Genesis he will be content with a simple admission of ignorance.” 19 The date is that of Rondeau.g.” “Chrysostom’s Commentary on the Psalms: homilies or tracts?”. homilists generally leave no preface. “Chrysostom. I have argued that the ﬁfty eight pieces show Chrysostom at his youthful best as an orator.”18 apart from making a case that they were in fact delivered as homilies to a group in a classroom in Antioch. interpreter of the Psalms. as has been cited above in the case or Origen’s homilies. his preaching giving him the liberty of greater expansiveness than written commentaries and of applying the psalmists’ sentiments to listeners’ lives (a feature conspicuously missing from the other Antiochenes). 21 Quasten. Cf. we have to admit that “we are not yet in a position to know anything about the historical circumstances of the commentaries on the Psalms. “Those who know that language say . was a work of his (relative) youth. 130. Baur. and that they lack “an appearance of actuality. . Photius attributes the (youthful?) expansiveness rather to Chrysostom’s composing the homilies “while at leisure rather than involved in public aﬀairs. is an unreliable index of orality of texts. even if they do not qualify as “by far the best of his homilies on the books of the Old Testament. 28.
this work bears the mark of predecessors beyond Antioch. ouvre sans hésiter son exégèse sur le temps de l’Incarnation et la période néo-testamentaire. de manière un peu systématique. There is thus no sign of the immaturity of a Theodore or a Chrysostom in his approach. like his Isaiah Commentary. such as Eusebius.24 Like Chrysostom. I wanted to do a commentary on this piece of inspired composition ﬁrst of all.-N. 24 23 . Despite Rondeau’s claim that Theodore “peut aisément recourir à l’original sémitique. so that they might sing its melodies and at the same time recognize the sense of the words they sing. pleading (in a possibly conventional justiﬁcation) popular demand as the reason for allowing other books to receive prior attention. Ezekiel and the Twelve Prophets before coming to the Psalms in the 440s. It would have been a pleasure for me to do a commentary on the inspired composition of the mighty David prior to the other divine sayings. . he will ignore the sage advice of Diodore against taking the psalm titles seriously. “widely admitted as textually and exegetically the most diﬃcult and obscure Praef. thus falling foul of the LXX’s misreading of Hebrew musical directions found there. on the other hand. à l’inverse.”25 the only linguistic advantage he displays over his fellow Antiochenes is his native Syriac.” 546: “Theodore paraît appliquer sans grande souplesse les principes d’herméneutique hérités de Diodore de Tarse et donne. 136. have all given their attention to this work in particular . thus reaping a double dividend.old testament commentary in antioch 91 In the next generation Theodoret. J. Daniel.” 25 Les commentateurs 1. Guinot. Cf. (PG 80. acknowledged a sense of obligation to begin his exegetical career with a Psalms Commentary. tout en restant ﬁdèle aux principes antiochiens. une orientation vetéro-testamentaire. . Théodoret. too. “La cristallisation d’un diﬀérend: Zorobabel dans l‘exégèse de Théodore de Mopsueste et de Théodoret de Cyr. both city dwellers and in the country.857). But we were prevented from putting this desire into eﬀect by those who requested from us commentaries on the other divine Scriptures. as in the case of Ps 68. instead. and oﬀer to discerning investors the proﬁt lying hidden in its depths. especially since the students of religion. il rejoint ainsi l’ensemble de la tradition patristique dont il se veut l’héritier. which occasionally allows him to divine more closely the sense of the original. nor does he feel constrained to adopt the narrowly historical approach of the Ioudaiophrôn in conﬁning a Christological character to only four of the Psalms.23 And so the bishop of Cyrus had already commented on the Song of Songs. à son exégèse.
28 Young. rather. Augustin.121–22. 34 So A. 30 J. 168. Mai in introducing Theodore’s Commentary (PG 66. Despite Diodore’s reputation (relayed to us by Theodorus Lector in the sixth century) for having commented on the whole of the Old Testament. Chrysostom has been rather more fortunate: while questions of authenticity remain about a commentary on Isaiah attributed to him. as Ruﬁnus and Ephrem of Antioch report. Jean Chrysostome. Theodoret excels for his conciseness (where Theodore can be prolix) and his ﬂexibility in respect of views of predecessors or even studious readers.34 we do not have it. 436. who entertains no such doubts. Biblical Exegesis. Dumortier. 33 PG 56. commentator in the Psalms. Psalms 2.” 582. The picture of prophets and prophecy that emerges from these still meagre remains Dahood. 133. The Greek text of 1:1–8:10 (CPG 4416) has been edited by J.31 Henry Savile. we noted above. Dumortier. “Interprétation chez les pères.”28 Perhaps.153–62. note 1 to Chapter 4.141–52.” 31 PG 56. Commentaire sur Isaie (SC 304). prophecy represented a challenge to Antioch’s historicism. Dumortier does question the authenticity of Homily 4 in this collection. 32 Cf. Homélies sur Ozias (SC 277).1). “Theodoret. 27 26 . but cf.32 was shown a commentary attributed to Chrysostom on Jeremiah in Munich but found it worthless. B. nothing of his survived on the prophets. on the other hand. Prophets While no other part of the Old or New Testament provides us with such a substantial corpus of comment from Antioch as the Psalter. but his objections have been magisterially countered by P. Cf. Jean Chrysostome. in the terminology of the Hebrew Bible. “La perennité de l’Eglise selon Jean Chrysostom et l’authenticité de la IVe Homélie Sur Ozias. 29 The Commentary is fully extant only in an Armenian version. Quasten.92 chapter six of all the psalms. Commentary on the Psalms 1. which leaves us with the single homily on Jer 10:23. “Modéré” is the appropriate term used of Theodoret by Bardy.” Theodoret of Cyrus. 1–36. Hill.”26 As a commentator. we are told that “the Antiochenes were fascinated with prophecy. Patrology 3.27 as we shall see.29 no such doubts aﬀect his six homilies on Isaiah 630 and one on Isaiah 45:6–7. The pity is that only two of the major ﬁgures have left us with any complete commentary on these Latter Prophets.33 If he did compose a work on The Twelve.
2304 forms the basis of the Mai edition of The Twelve Commentary appearing in PG 66 and also of the modern critical edition by H.” 69–70. Claims in the Syriac catalogues of his having worked also on the “four” major prophets (Daniel included) have been contested on the grounds of silence on the part of the Greek historians and council statements.36 What might be thought. M. deﬁnitions and unalterable doctrines:’ Chrysostom on Jeremiah. allowing the preacher to lecture on an adequate approach to reading scriptural pericopes if they are not to “mangle the limbs of the body of the divinely-inspired Scriptures. without the accent on historical fulﬁlment we ﬁnd in Diodore’s more dutiful pupil that encourages a more pedestrian approach. J.old testament commentary in antioch 93 is a mixed one. like chronology (SC 277. in fact. How. Hill. . then. It is an elevated vision of the role of the prophets (and other Old Testament authors) in the divine scheme of things. Chrysostom does launch into a rebuttal of views of the irrelevance of factual data in Scripture. on the other hand. what proves prophecies to be prophecy: prophecy is nothing else than the prediction of future events.37 Its being an early work. the Jeremiah verse is taken in that homily as but one of many that people in Antioch were in the habit of misquoting to relieve themselves of moral responsibility.96): “It is. Sprenger. The manuscript Vat. “ ‘Norms. a gift that may be withdrawn (though the focus moves from Isaiah—“the most articulate of all the prophets”—to the King Uzziah of 2 Ch 26 as an exemplar of Anomean temerity). will the person ignorant of the mention of events and outcomes be able to prove to the adversary the worth of the prophecy?” But it is not a preoccupation of his throughout. N.” When Theodoret at the end of his career comes to bring his work on the prophetic corpus to a close with a full commentary on Jeremiah. is suggested by his documenting his text principally from them (“as was pointed out on many occasions in blessed David’s usage”) and not the other Latter Prophets. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius in XII prophetas. 37 Cf.gr. Vosté. and from the still youthful 35 Cf. he notes this same tendency to misquote the verse. then. we have seen above the richness of his thinking in the six Antioch homilies on Isa 6 on the Scriptures as God’s ımil¤a with his people. following directly on the Commentary on the Psalms. being delivered when Chrysostom was bishop in Constantinople (and apparently ﬁnding him unprepared as second speaker on the day’s reading).”35 While the homily on Isa 45:6–7 is not grist to our mill here. 36 In the second homily. though we have only his early Commentary on The Twelve as evidence. as we saw. to be the more typically Antiochene approach to prophecy we ﬁnd in Theodore. “La chronologie de l’activité littéraire de Théodore de Mopsueste.
three prior to the fall of Samaria in 722 (Obadiah. admittedly. set within a context culminating in the Incarnation: Its occurrence had been told and foreseen well in advance by God.40 Within that overall oﬁkonom¤a.94 chapter six smugness. has been thought to be due to its containing “almost nothing of Christological import. 2. . now available in English translation. and will prefer to bring Zerubbabel into focus rather than Jesus. 11 (PG 86. A Sullivan.” 39 The remark occurs ﬁrst. and Zechariah and the “full- 38 Cf. Jonah. he recognizes the fate of the people to be.39 We shall see in Chapter Eight. in fact. 40 Sprenger. The Theology of Theodore of Mopsuestia. In his attempts to determine. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. as appears in his introduction of the work as “an indictment of those who presume to apply themselves to the prophetic utterances without due preparation. drilled in the principles of Aristarchus. and Malachi to the period after the rebuilding of the Temple.”38 The survival of the work.” Theodore is handicapped by his imperfect formation in literary genres. Finding them in his Antioch text in the order of the Hebrew Bible (not the LXX generally). 405.” a facile comment oft repeated that perhaps disguises an unwillingness to delve into the text. Z. as he says. such as by a reading of the text of the Commentary. and then in Quasten. Theodore sets about identifying the historical situation of each prophet. et Eutych. apparently. It needs nuancing. A Study of Old Testament Exegesis. two prior to the fall of Jerusalem (Habakkuk and Zephaniah). Two prophets in particular impede his following this goal: Jonah and “the novel and extraordinary things” he ﬁnds there. Zaharopoulos. wants to see prophecies realized within the bounds of the Old Testament. Joel. Leontius. Patrology 3.1364. Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Bible. and later in D. with Haggai and Zechariah assigned to the restoration. who understood these people’s wickedness and clearly realized how he needed to conduct aﬀairs in their regard by way of preparation for the manifestation and coming of Christ the Lord. Amos. the only one of Theodore’s that is extant fully in Greek. that though the author. the prophecy by The Twelve of “what would shortly happen. under the supervision of God. Contra Nestor. he envisages four as eighth century prophets (Hosea.11): “In his misinterpretation of the divine Scriptures that coarse fellow never ceased mocking and jeering at the eﬀorts of the holy teachers who have worked on them. 32. Micah). in F. Nahum). 1.
” 44 M.” 503. F. was discovered in 1948 at Tura outside Cairo. defending him almost to the last and rewriting the text where necessary to preserve his credibility. It was an Antiochene extreme that Theodoret in the next generation preferred to avoid. a resolve that perhaps accounts for the survival of his full coverage of the prophetic corpus of the Old Testament.860). 369. for instance). let us pose this question to them: what do you claim is typical of a prophet? Perhaps P. opting instead to adopt Origen’s solution of taking the text at another level. there is no modern critical edition. For us to establish their brazen behavior convincingly. which comes by direct transmission and of which a critical edition exists (SC 83). also go without comment. “Theodore of Mospuestia. Hanson. 43 Cf. Even Daniel was included. The text of the Daniel Commentary is found in PG 81.”44 of which only the former is the constant focus of Old Testament authors. Wiles.” “Jonah in Antioch. in Pss (PG 80.” katå pr«ton lÒgon.43 Theodore’s commentaries on The Twelve and the Psalms show him anxious to ﬁnd history there. 45 Praef. too. Apocalyptic motifs such as the Day of the Lord (in Joel. The Commentary on Zechariah (CPG 2549) is the only complete work in Greek by Didymus on a biblical book whose authenticity is established. The apocalyptic visions in the latter test his instinctive resolve to take texts “at ﬁrst ﬂush. and relegated from the prophetic corpus—much to Theodoret’s chagrin—by the Jews of his day. that in giving attention to a book classed by today’s commentators as rather a mixture of haggadic tales and apocalyptic visions. It may be. a commentary on this book being composed second after the Song of Songs in response to requests (so he tells us) by those “anxious to have a close knowledge of the Man of Passion”45 (the term for Daniel in the Theodotion version of 9:23). he burnt his hermeneutical ﬁngers as he struggled to uphold its prophetic credentials. cannot help him remedy this deﬁciency. Hill.old testament commentary in antioch 95 blown apocalyptic”41 in the book’s second half in particular. “Theodore of Mopsuestia as representative of the Antiochene school. The text. The Dawn of Apocalyptic. 42 41 . Didymus in Alexandria.42 open before him. interpreter of the prophets. a history he reads in the light of “his strong theological conviction of the radical nature of the break between the two ages or dispensations before and after Christ. D. He resists the biblical author’s intention of portraying the former prophet as an object of ridicule. long lost.
Eusebius and Jerome. L’Exégèse de Théodoret de Cyr. A commentator naturally inclined to background the text for the beneﬁt of his readers with a view to “making clear to those in ignorance the inspired composition of the most divine Daniel” thus made a rod for his own back. The biblical text it incorporates is of interest both for the diﬃculty the LXX ﬁnds in rendering obscure terms to do with Temple structure (where it often settles for transliteration). he still has to confront the objection of the book’s obscurity. as he realizes in trying to establish the historical status of “Darius the Mede” of Chapter 6 and the book’s characters and events generally. Guinot. there is no modern critical edition. He admits his indebtedness to them in accepting the interpretation of the fourth beast enumerated in chapter 2 as the Roman empire. and the initial misjudgement of genre proves an insuperable obstacle. therefore.96 chapter six your reply would be. numbers employed in a spiritual sense and periods devoid of historical foundation resist his attempts at elucidation. L. especially devotees of the true religion. 48 The text of the Commentary appears in PG 81. 49 PG 81. 47 46 . and for the doublets occurring in the Antioch text. 715. A similar misjudgement is made in Theodoret’s next work. McGregor.49 PG 81. Though previously he had—unusually for an Antiochene— warmed to the extended allegories of the book in persuading his readers of the Song of Songs of the ﬁgurative character of Scripture.47 their diﬀerent approach to biblical eschatology only compounds the problem. Origen. adopt such a presumptuous attitude to the divine Spirit as to accuse his words of obscurity. cf. which had been espoused by Hippolytus. Irenaeus. on Ezekiel.1260. which he denies: Let no one. Though he is typically open to inﬂuence from predecessors of another school. as in the case of the Gog of Chapters 38 & 39. Try as he may. Cf. and though he also ﬁnds the liturgical themes in Ezekiel to his liking. whether blessed Daniel had a foreknowledge of it and foretold it.46 He had thus set himself an impossible task. The Greek Text of Ezekiel.48 a book which to a more limited extent employs the genre of apocalyptic. Foreseeing and foretelling the future.809. Let us see. including the sweeping scenario of epochs and rulers and empires in the apocalyptic second half of the book.
is not immune from the eﬀects of failing to recognize the genre of apocalyptic in the case of Joel and Zechariah. another case of prophecy conﬁrmed by the facts. referring only to relative length: “Quia sermones eorum sunt breves” (De civ. There is no modern critical edition. It may be an argument in favor of Theodore’s not having commented on the four major prophets that Theodoret does not raise an objection to the historicism of predecessors in their regard after having earlier done so in his work on the Song and later repeating the point on the Psalms.1836. by contrast.” 50 . 52 PG 81. “Sartor resartus: Theodore under review by Theodoret. 51 The text of the Commentary is found in PG 81. In coming to compose a Commentary on the Twelve (minor)50 Prophets. “La cristallisation d’un diﬀérend. The endorsement of the Pax Romana in the text suggests a date in the late 430s for its composition. he is aware of previous Antiochene comment in which the hermeneutical perspective in particular is foreshortened. he is atypically irritated at the latter’s unwillingness to entertain an eschatological reading of the prayer that is Chapter 3 of Habakkuk: I thought it absurd. Dei 29. While suo more he can be tolerant of alternative views on matters such as the true nature of the locust plague in Joel. and is not meant pejoratively. however. unknown to Antioch and Alexandria at the time.old testament commentary in antioch 97 It is. as an Antiochene he proceeds to work at this level. CCL 48. too Jewish and not inclusive of a Christological dimension. is Augustine’s. on the other hand.53 He himself. allowing for a ﬁgurative reference to Assyrians and Babylonians such as Theodore had adopted. 53 Cf.619). prãgmata. now that the reality is in force and the shadow has been blotted out by the body. One such irritating interpretation is the latter’s repeated nomination of Zerubbabel as the referent where Jesus is thought by Theodoret to be more properly in focus.” Hill. to apply the prophecy to other things when it deﬁnitely does not relate to them.52 And he gets equally indignant at other oﬀerings of a Jewish interpretation by people who should know better—“teachers of religion”— which is a long-hand way of referring to his Ioudaiophrôn predecessor. as we shall see in Chapter Eight. he claims.51 He has also had the opportunity to see the way these composers could be interpreted by a moderate Alexandrian like Cyril. The qualiﬁcation. unconcerned that others saw it is a treatise on mystical theology. Guinot.
of course.55 In moving to Isaiah late in the 440s. “Le caractère propre de l’exégèse de Théodoret tient surtout au fait qu’il a su s’ouvrir largement. on the contrary. the same as ever: With the exception of the remarkable Jeremiah. 632. Guinot has performed a major service by identifying all explicit and implicit references to predecessors in Theodoret’s works (631–799). Guinot points out that of all his works it is only in the prefaces to Ezekiel. 295. Theodoret. Commentaire sur Isaïe (SC 276. The manuscript discovered in Constantinople (no. 57 SC 276. Guinot. as in the case of commentary on Zechariah with Didymus’s work available to him. L’Exégèse. 315).” in Guinot’s words. will generally begin by admitting that he is small fry by comparison with his predecessors (as in the case of commentaries on the Song and—though not relevant here—Paul). Theodoret implicitly acknowledges his indebtedness. Théodoret de Cyr. à l’inverse de Théodore et même de Diodore. 54 .”56 Acknowledgement is due. nevertheless. to such an extent as to be illegible. is now in Athens in a “mauvais état de conservation. in fact. that though he may have been exposed to the works of predecessors with which the latter was also familiar.54 Hence his dismissive remarks about them and implicit claims to a sounder approach (as at the opening of The Twelve Commentary and as early as Psalm 2). Isaiah and Jeremiah that he makes no mention of his predecessors. à d’autres formes d’interprétation.98 chapter six Theodore. his sense of superiority seems not to have permitted him to proﬁt from them to the same extent. the other prophets’ thought we have with God’s help explicated as far as is possible. containing also a text of the Jeremiah Commentary). he feels. suﬀered a limitation not aﬀecting Theodoret.” 55 L’Exégèse.57 Cf. Yet Theodoret’s aim and characteristic features here are. and will present their views—including Theodore’s—fairly. 799. the work showing a pervasive inﬂuence of Eusebius of Caesarea and Cyril of Alexandria in particular in the way the Song Commentary betrays the inﬂuence of Origen (via Eusebius) throughout.140. giving particular care to conciseness and clarity. and his insistence on adhering to an Antiochene historical approach even when aware of alternative views. Antiochene attention to the historical situation is relatively limited. assuring his readers that “I too am making an eﬀort to overcome the limits of poverty and share with my fellow believers the crumbs I have received” from “the aﬄuent. 56 The long-lost text of the Commentary has been edited by Guinot. 17 of the Metochion of the Holy Sepulchre.
but not the Epistle of Jeremiah) in the form we have it. L’Exégèse. 60 Cf. 113sq. Theodoret does exploit the advantage of his knowledge of Syriac and acquaintance with the Peshitta. 59 58 . but without elaboration. of the Jeremiah Commentary (which includes Lamentations and Baruch. While the conciseness of treatment (or process of transmission) results in omission of the usual citation of alternative versions. not being prepared to dismiss the claim to authenticity of the Migne text of Jeremiah. he often found in Eusebius’s Onomasticon).”58 It was perhaps a reluctant completion of the prophetic corpus. in fact. thanks to divine grace.15).60 In his Questions on Chronicles. topography and the natural sciences unremitting (which. instead of the eschatological dimension he gave to Isaiah. 798. geography. incorporates elements declared “missing from the LXX” by modern commentators insensitive to its local forms. Geerard. admittedly.” The Athens manuscript containing the text of the Isaiah Commentary also contains a text of the Jeremiah Commentary whose opening words diﬀer from the PG text. Paramelle also in a survey article on “Christianisme Byzantin” in Annuaire de l’Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes 88 (1979–80) 379–86 makes a passing reference to “l’inauthenticité du Commentaire de Jérémie” (380). In regard to the authenticity of the text of the Commentary in PG 81. J. The Antiochene text. as we noted in Chapter Four. 61 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Reges et Paralipomena. Faulhaber. if exceptionally concise. CPG 6205. suntom¤a. M. and his characteristic attention to textual items of history. Guinot.202. cites the doubts of M.59 The biblical text cited (not always fully) in the work is especially valuable for today’s exegetes comparing Greek with (our) Hebrew in the case of a book where the former is much briefer. SC 98. if we can judge from the extreme conciseness.old testament commentary in antioch 99 That exception he dealt with shortly before claiming in a letter to Eusebius of Ancyra in 448 that he had commented on “all the prophets. here his approach is consistently historical. but its completely corrupt condition allows for no full comparison. A reader of the PG text is struck by the resemblance to Theodoret’s normal style. Theodoret in failing health felt with some satisfaction that he had previously done justice to Jeremiah: “That book in its entirety we commented on as well.”61 We. Die Propheten-Catenen nach Römischen Handschriften. his ﬁnal exegetical work. even if it may have to be conceded to be “composite et lacunaire. For his part Guinot nevertheless feels we are conﬁdent in claiming “l’on est désormais en possession de tous les commentaires de Théodoret sur les prophètes” (SC 277. 299. the psalter and the apostle. He shows none of his recent indebtedness to predecessors of another school.
We do not ﬁnd Antioch commentators speaking of Pentateuch or Torah. the diﬃculties. Quaestiones in Octateuchum et Reges. while the Syriac catalogues refer to a commentary of his on Genesis. and would be employed in the west by Augustine. 5–25. historical books. Diodore’s work. all devoted to at least a part of the book (known also as Kt¤siw or Kosmopoi˝a. Theodore had not emulated Diodore by adopting this genre. Deconinck. 63 For Bardy.64 would prove invaluable to Theodoret as a source of predecessors’ views when he adopted this genre. Homer was “la source inépuisable d’apories.65 It was probably because of his role as preacher in Antioch that Chrysostom delivered a number of series of homilies on Genesis in the period of (an eight-week) Lent. We have three such series from him. 156). are gratiﬁed by his thus leaving us a complete sample—if not always typical—of Antiochene commentary on the Latter Prophets of the Old Testament. tå êpora. 65 Devreese assembles the Genesis fragments in his Essai sur Théodore de Mopsueste. Eissfeldt. The Old Testament. Devreesse. as they had to the Psalms for diﬀerent reasons. of the whole Octateuch called for attention. there is no mention of one on Exodus. whose exegetical. Octateuch.62 and Diodore responded in the Questions genre that had been in service. hermeneutical and other accents we shall examine in the following chapters. a customary text used also for catechesis of candidates preparing for baptism at Easter. C. tradition obliged them to introduce their ﬂock also to the mysteries of the book of Genesis. Song of Songs If Antiochene pastors were not as “fascinated” with some other parts of the Old Testament as they were with prophecy. but for various 62 The term Octateuch was known in the early Church (so O.” 64 These have been edited by J. comments by Theodore bearing on liturgical details Devreesse believes belong to a commentary on Hebrews rather than Exodus.100 chapter six too. of which fragments alone remain.63 since Aristotle and Philo in the east (but not including Origen). “Creation”). of which we have only fragments. R. In fact. Jerome and medievals like Abelard. . “La littérature patristique patristique des ‘Quaestiones et Responsiones’ sur l’écriture sainte.” RB 41 (1932) 211. even to deal with the text of Homer. Les anciens commentateurs grecs de l’Octateuch et des Rois.
There is also a typically positive (if literalist) presentation of the Fall. to ignore us and attend to him! Here am I. Chrysostom obviously feels under no obligation to move systematically through Genesis. “Chrysostom’s sermons on Genesis: a problem. Why do I say this? Because while we are discoursing to you on the Scriptures.old testament commentary in antioch 101 reasons diﬀering considerably. Markowicz. and a moving treatment of the domestic church to which the participants return to read and pray. van de Paverd. He selects only certain verses for examination of particular items. Only the third series. 387. and dispel indiﬀerence. This light is brighter and better than that light: we are not kindling a wick Edited by L. Even the congregation’s distraction provokes a memorable rebuke in Sermon Four. you instead are averting your eyes from us and ﬁxing them on the lamps and the man lighting the lamps. seems to have been delivered at a late stage in Lent of 386. Sermons sur la Genèse (SC 433).68 not surprisingly repeating some passages given earlier. from those days only eight sermons are extant. but cf. What extreme indiﬀerence is this. Jean Chrysostome. in Quadragesima (western Lent’s forty days). given in the next year or two. like the sense of “dominion” found in the word image in Gen 1:26. St John Chrysostom: The Homilies on the Statues. and moves onto such topics as the need to give alms to the poor and whether the robber on the cross was actually admitted to heaven or only to paradise. The series of eight “sermons” (so called to distinguish them from the long series). Brottier. 68 PG 53. W. by what ensued after the vandalizing of the images of the imperial family.” 664: “Partial repetitions triggered by similarity of circumstance are no surprise to any teacher-preacher of many years.66 getting no further than the ﬁrst three chapters. the study by F. There is no critical edition. lighting the ﬁre that comes from the Scriptures. as well as some jousting with a range of heresies. A.” 67 66 . the emperor’s harsh response and Bishop Flavian’s hasty journey to Constantinople to seek clemency for the city. The second series became celebrated rather as the Homilies on the Statues (or Homilies to the people of Antioch)67 because interrupted after the ﬁrst homily on February 21.69 Though the bishop and perhaps other clergy are present during the series of eight sermons. 69 Cf. Wake up there. and the light of its teaching is burning on our tongue. treated of the whole book in the course of sixty seven homilies. 54. PG 49.
Asensio.71 Attention is also given to moral topics like the needless taking of oaths and abuse of alcohol. Hill. perhaps these homilies qualify only loosely as biblical commentary. Cf.” Likewise. See below in Chapter Eight. however. but at such a slow rate initially that only twelve chapters have been covered in thirty two homilies by the end of Lent. 1–19. St John Chrysostom.238–40.102 chapter six saturated in oil. Theodoret. Kelly. The term “literalist” has been thought extreme when applied to Chrysostom’s commentary on such heavily ﬁgurative narratives as Gen 3. as does Chrysostom. F. explaining the appearance of a second creation story in Gen 2 as the Spirit’s wish to be insistent about the true origins of things and “prevent anyone’s being able to engage in controversy later on. “El Crisóstomo y su visión de la escritura en la exposición homilética del Génesis.72 He is not ready to admit diversity of contributions to a composite narrative.3. like him: souls bedewed with piety we set alight with the desire for listening. It is in the long series of sixty seven homilies delivered in 388 or 389 that we ﬁnd systematic coverage of Genesis. the church was the place to hear the latest developments in the bishop’s mission. The treatment of the preacher’s text is as literalist as in the sermons. On the positive side. try though the preacher may in Homilies 7–9 to stay with his text.. 71 70 .70 There are more pressing distractions in the Statues homilies.” 334: “Exégesis innegablemente literal. If apora in Genesis remained for Theodoret to clarify later in a more focused manner. the two overlapping attempts to develop a genealogy of Adam’s descendants in Gen 4 and 5 are seen as deliberate exercises by the one author. it is surely a literalist reading to take them as factual statement. by contrast. the series then interrupted to resume at Pentecost. Chrysostom’s listeners had been treated by the recently ordained preacher to a profound theology of the inspired word. 72–81. cf. 72 Cf.” While the ﬁgures may properly be taken literally (i. with amusements and factories shut down and rumors rife. Golden Mouth. in the sense intended by the author). pero no literalista.e. Homilies on Genesis 1–17. was at the end of his exegetical career when despite poor health he succumbed to requests by his coadjutor Hypatius in the decade after the council of Chalcedon to deal SC 433. we have seen above in Chapter Three Chrysostom’s theology being developed in these homilies of the biblical word as parallel to the Incarnation of the Word through a divine gesture of sugkatãbasiw.
old testament commentary in antioch 103 under the genre of Questions with the problems or questions.74 Not only are readers of these Old Testament books often at a loss. his approach to his vast corpus generally does not reﬂect the critical spirit of modern commentators: he is slow to acknowledge layers in a composite text. Henry.75 the commentator exploits the genre to give himself a cue to discourse on subjects of interest to him. zhtÆmata ka‹ lÊseiw) was justiﬁed in acknowledging Theodoret’s relatively competent use of it. individual theologies of a Deuteronomist or Chronicler are not identiﬁed.” 74 The critical edition is by Fernández Marcos and Busto Saiz. Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Reges et Paralipomena. there are some commentators on them. Predictably. thus admitting eschatological.” Cf. Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. ékr¤beia. As well. of the Octateuch (including Ruth. Nevertheless. III. tå êpora or tå zhtÆmata. Theodoret’s opening “question” on Ruth implies commonly held doubts as to its relevance. spiritual and/or sacramental interpretations. believing they ﬁnd the divine Scripture wanting. “Old Testament Questions of Theodoret of Cyrus. “La littérature patristique.”76 73 The critical edition is by Fernández Marcos and Sáenz-Badillos.” . “This narrative is suﬃcient of itself to oﬀer great beneﬁt to those who realize the kind of beneﬁt accruing from it. “Why on earth was the story of Ruth composed?” After summarizing it. the many textual discrepancies are not seen to reﬂect diversity of authorship. to which he typically gives consideration. Clarity and conciseness are again Theodoret’s priority. “It would not be easy to ﬁnd anyone better at elucidating obscure points. on which we have no other patristic commentary)73 and also of Kingdoms (1 Sam–2 Kgs) and Chronicles (also a unique Greek commentary). 75 The view of Bardy. he supplies the reason. in other cases for giving conﬂicting instructions. Photius proceeds to declare Theodoret’s Questions a “book which is. Hill.” RB 42 (1933) 351–52. like the details of liturgical practice or Temple structure and furnishings (in Leviticus and Chronicles. Photius (who himself later adopted this genre of questions and answers. 76 Bibliotheca 203 ed. for instance). on the whole. Theodoret maintains.” While the “questioner” thus frequently pinpoints an item in the text that is obscure (perhaps already selected by a predecessor). thanks to Diodore’s previous Questions (at least on the Octateuch) he has access to predecessors’ views. as well as an eye for detail in the interests of precision. who “inquire irreverently. 103. helpful (xrÆsimon). in some cases for not teaching right doctrine. Christological.
“St John Chrysostom’s Homilies on Hannah. cited above in Chapter Four. The attention to the mother of Samuel.79 composed around the time of the council of Ephesus in 431. Chrysostom delivered ﬁve further homilies. Hill. cf. Chrysostom had found value in the ﬁgure of the presumptuous King Uzziah in 2 Chr 26 in the course of his fourth homily on Isa 6 to develop his notion of the Scriptures as God’s ımil¤a with humankind. in declining to react to injustice with force. cf.” 79 The text of the commentary appears in PG 81. extends no further than the beginning of her prayer in 1 Sam 2:1–2 after she has served her purpose for the preacher’s themes of formation of the young.78 To complete our survey of commentary on the Old Testament composed in Antioch in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries. It was to the Song that Theodoret devoted his ﬁrst commentary. he refers to similar works (no longer extant) by Diodore. the stormy relationship of these two Old Testament ﬁgures and especially David’s admirable gentleness. he was not the ﬁrst to show an interest in Former Prophets and Chronicler. mention should ﬁnally be made of Chrysostom’s Commentary on Job and Proverbs and Theodoret’s work on the Song of Songs. Hill. prayer and divine providence.” Van de Paverd. however. Not to mention Eustathius’s study of 1 Sam 28 preceding our period. the Syriac catalogues do not list such a 77 . 78 The text of the Hannah homilies appears in PG 54. shortly after the emperor accepted this advice and showed the city clemency. known as homilies on David and Saul. regrettably. which touch on the recent crisis. the young preacher had ventured to comment on developments and even suggest obliquely to the emperor how clemency was the appropriate response by detailing in three homilies.104 chapter six If in the course of his late use of the Questions genre Theodoret has left us with unique Antiochene and in fact Greek patristic coverage of Ruth and Chronicles.80 none of which are extant. A critical edition is in course of preparation in the Sources Chrétiennes series. 80 Despite claims by Leontius and in some documents from the ﬁfth ecumenical council in 553 that condemned his works. In acknowledging predecessors within and beyond Antioch.77 Again. The text of the David and Saul homilies appears in PG 54. does not ﬁnd them of value in dating the critical events of 387. Chrysostom and—possibly—Theodore. now known as homilies on Hannah. “Chrysostom’s homilies on David and Saul. And in the context of the political crisis in Antioch in 387 after the Statues incident. praÒthw.
They knew the book to be spiritual—Basil the Great. but also those after them who gained distinction in the churches. the noble champion of piety. displaying both an awareness of his Antiochene heritage and also an openness to other predecessors like Origen (accessed through Eusebius). An omission from this list is the early commentary of Hippolytus. 83 PG 81. “Théodoret a-t-il lue les homélies d’Origène sur l’Ancien Testament?”.old testament commentary in antioch 105 Many of the ancients also commented on it. otherwise surviving are only those of Origen (a commentary and homilies.” 81 PG 81. He would thus not be the predecessor (though generally taken to be) whom Theodoret pillories in his preface for his historicism: “Some commentators misrepresent the Song of Songs. who also wore the crown of martyrdom. one boasting kinship with him. is “to bring obscurity to clarity”83 in the case of a work in danger of rejection for its sexual explicitness. believe it to be not a spiritual book. Job. His aim. Proverbs and Ecclesiastes. Commentary on the Song of Songs. He claims in his preface. and—to put it in a nutshell and avoid length of discourse—all those after them. as always. Theodoret of Cyrus. and in Latin) and of Gregory of Nyssa. Diodore.212. the other friendship. and men more ancient than they and closer to the apostles.32. who commented on the beginning of Proverbs. It comes almost as a codicil to mention what we have of Chrysostom’s works on the sapiential books. John.81 This initial work represents a signiﬁcant declaration of intent by this bishop with pastoral experience. both Gregories. and dare to claim that Solomon the sage wrote it as a factual account of himself and the Pharaoh’s daughter. Origen of Egypt. those afterwards who did not do so have adorned their own compositions with passages from it—not only Eusebius of Palestine. come up instead with some fanciful stories inferior even to babbling old wives’ tales. partly because a question of authenticity hangs over the latter two. partly. bedewing the whole world with the streams of his teaching to this very day. 3–18. which by application of a hermeneutic not generally favored by Antioch could be shown to have spiritual and even Christological meaning. Hill. Guinot. It teaches us the major forms of God’s goodness and reveals to us the innermost recesses and the holiest of holy mysteries of divine lovingkindness (the latter phrase deriving from the rabbis via Origen). Cyprian of Carthage. . and partly because they come to us not as homilies preserved by the processes of stenographic transmission to which we are indebted for work by Theodore. which survives in a Georgian version.82 to the eﬀect that his ﬂock required commentary more urgently on Old Testament material than on the Gospels and Paul. 82 Cf.
however. while agreeing on Chrysostom’s authorship of the former work. and (if only because of partial coverage of the biblical text) why the work has come to us in only one manuscript (though abundantly represented in the catenae). these books being felt to illustrate key tenets of Antiochene theology. It is ironic and perhaps unfortunate that it is the works of Theodoret. “Le commentaire de Saint Jean Chrysostome sur les Proverbes de Salomon. en vue d’éventuelles homélies sur le livre de Job?” While the notes on Proverbs can be almost telegraphic in their brevity. where they have been accessed by French scholars Marcel Richard85 and Guillaume Bady. on Octateuch and historical books. We should now turn to examining in more detail all these pastors’ approach to the task of commentary and Antioch’s distinctive hermeneutic. the Song of Songs and The Chronicler. Commentaire sur Job 1. SC 346. In the period under discussion in this volume which closes with Theodoret’s death around 460. if uneven in its development. 35. the Job work is full of rhetorical verve. the biblical tradition of Christianity received ample attention in the formation of the faithful in Antioch at the hands of these pastors. as the Job editor concedes. .106 chapter six the major commentaries but in note form for the preacher’s later use. n. these scholars themselves. Clearly. Sorlin. Evagrius and others wrote on Proverbs. which are found in the same single manuscript on Patmos. that (arguably for reasons of odium theologicum) have survived more completely than commentaries adopting more inﬂexibly the principles of Diodore. Richard. and less so Chrysostom.84 The works on Proverbs and Ecclesiastes. not as prof∞tai. it and the other sapiential commentaries deserve editing and further study. are in the process of being critically edited. 84 H. A reader of the Proverbs Commentary can see both why for the Antioch Fathers the authors rate only as sages. Didymus. and the Jewish scriptures loomed no less large in discharge of this pastoral duty. the founder of Antioch’s exegetical method. 85 Cf. an imposing amount of commentary in word and writing on the Old Testament was produced by the leading Antiochene ﬁgures—on Psalms and Prophets. sofo¤. Origen. disgree on the latter. It is signiﬁcant that. though Hippolytus.” Bady is preparing the Proverbs Commentary for publication in the SC series. the term normally applied to those Old Testament authors enjoying divine inspiration. on the sapiential books. de notes de lecture dans lesquelles Chrysostome se proposait de puiser ultérieurement. Chrysostom’s is the only patristic commentary to survive. 1: “Ne serions-nous pas en présence d’un texte incomplètement élaboré.
was properly equipped to carry out exegesis as we have come to understand it. Neither John. Kelly in his study of Chrysostom remarks. even if aﬄuent and lettered enough to read it at home. the term “exegesis” in the strict sense examined in the previous chapter should not be freely used of these commentators’ work. found it obscure for reasons Chrysostom had detailed in his homilies on the subject. One could arguably claim that the antiquity and diversity of Old Testament material raise more diﬃcult critical questions for a com1 2 On 8:12 (PG 81. still less the complex issues raised by the study of the gospels. D. . Kelly proceeds to add to his timely caveat about his subject the further caution. especially students of the text of the Old Testament and the history of exegesis. J. He could not be expected to understand the nature of the Old Testament writings. It was therefore biblical commentary that they embarked on as a necessary task to be performed. “reading the Old Testament” meant also commenting on it for the congregations for which they had pastoral responsibility. While later ages neglect to their peril this vast corpus of biblical comment.CHAPTER SEVEN ANTIOCHENE APPROACH TO THE TASK OF COMMENTARY For the principal ﬁgures of the school of Antioch in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries. even of their extant works.2 a caveat we have seen validated.212). on the Song of Songs) to “bring obscurity to clarity. These lay people. N. Golden Mouth. nor any Christian teacher for centuries to come. 94.”1 The great volume. highlights the pastors’ degree of commitment to the task of discharging this responsibility within the overall compass of cura pastoralis in the church of Antioch (in the wide sense outlined in Chapter One) among the various forms of tradition of the faith. and the commentators felt obliged (in the words of Theodoret in his ﬁrst work.
then. it has been recognized as bearing hallmarks of the approach of the rhetoricians. . religious and political systems. better than they do to the book of Genesis with its complicated history of composition. d’Antioche et d’ailleurs.” The same. the commentators would need to touch on those other matters if their readers were to appreciate fully the content of the letters sent by God and delivered by Moses. two having sat at the feet of master Diodore. A. leaving to the next chapter a study of the rather diﬀerent challenge of interpreting this variegated material. and that Chrysostom rises to the challenge of Matthew and John. we noted in Chapter One. Commentarii. arising from a variety of historical periods and life situations. Though this fashion of commentary owed little to any philosophical system. . . . could not be said of the commentators’ hermeneutics. these commentators’ (in)ability to grapple with ancient semitic works. it is rather the former assertion that should be examined. Untersuchungen. . . Biblical Exegesis. is grounded in the exegetical (sic) activities of the rhetorical schools . makes the point repeatedly: “The principal Antiochene exegetes (sic) could have been expected to practice exegesis (sic) according to rhetorical conventions . For Olivier.3 3 Young. and representing diﬀerent purposes of diﬀerent composers. composed in a range of literary genres not all familiar to the readers. We should now study their approach to this task.108 chapter seven mentator than the New Testament. surely. The principal Antiochene exegetes (sic) undoubtedly had a rhetorical education . Antiochene exegesis (sic). however. xciv. Diodore In as far as the commentators in Antioch can be said to be members of a school. Diodore’s style of commentary has nothing original about it: “Elle est celle de tout exégète (sic) d’Alexandrie. Even if they willynilly fell short of dealing adequately with textual questions of Old Testament works. that Diodore and Theodore show the marked inﬂuence of pagan rhetoricians. That is not a question to be debated in these pages. including the Gospels. and Theodoret (to judge from his preface to the Song of Songs and from works like his Commentary on the Twelve Prophets and his Questions) familiar with his local predecessors’ work and method. and Theodoret to Paul. .” It is the basic drift of Schäublin’s work. betraying signs of diﬀering cultures. David and the other prof∞tai. 169–76. (Eustathius’s) interpretation is rooted in the traditional paideia of the rhetorical schools. we may presume that to some extent they approached the task of commentary in similar fashion. and theological mindsets. oral and written.
a theme and/or (in the case of individual psalms) a narrative setting. psalm numbers have been transposed in accord with the Hebrew and modern versions. A. Greer. ÍpÒyesiw. The Psalms in Diodore’s view are primarily a text. S. detectable in (at least) some psalms: The fortieth psalm has a Babylonian setting (ÍpÒyesiw). on Theodore’s (and thus Diodore’s) intentions in using the term. 5 4 . Accepting the analysis of Diodore’s commentary by L. Such distinctions are the rhetoricans’. as we shall see). Weiser. Early Biblical Interpretation. 188. the psalmist speaks. and in introducing Ps 19 he schematically lays out diﬀerent positions on divine providence. For convenience. Blessed David’s purpose (skopÒw) is to show the Israelites beneﬁting greatly from the prolonged hardship. composed from the viewpoint (prÒsvpon) of blessed Hezekiah and directed against the Assyrians. Cf. there is a particular purpose. 6 Cf. The Psalms in Israel’s Worship. he opens his preface by referring to “the book of the divine Psalms. Mowinckel. 152. As a whole the Psalms are moral or doctrinal in their theme.5 Point of view is important for a commentator who wants both to see David as author and yet to relate psalms to a range of historical periods and personages. as does each psalm—that is. twenty eighth. skopÒw. in the preface he systematically categorizes psalms on the basis of content. Diodore tells us in the preface. The Psalms.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 109 That these features did not derive only from Libanius’s tutelage is indicated by their presence in Diodore’s extant Commentary on the Psalter. twenty ninth and thirtieth psalms have the same ÍpÒyesiw. 7 Commentarii. Commentarii. editor Olivier sees in his procedure traditional methods of a teacher in antiquity when dealing with texts. indeed. in whose person. xciii–xciv. not songs (deriving from and) to be sung in a liturgical context. prÒsvpon. whereas he can ﬁnd the one narrative setting in the case of groups of psalms: The twenty seventh. including in four cases (alone) Jesus—the term thus taking on particular theological overtones. The Psalter as a whole has a ÍpÒyesiw.6 In addition.7 He does.” showing none of the interest in Sitz im Leben evident in some modern commentaries4 (which is not to say he will not try to identify author and historical incidents associated—credibly or not—with each psalm. and the actual text makes the psalm clearer. Mariès. impress us a methodical teacher.
does not always yield to the application of general rhetorical principles from pagan antiquity. an exception is that of apocalyptic. The latter are worse than those saying they do not beneﬁt from providence: those saying they do not beneﬁt from providence do not go so far as to claim also that they exist of themselves. . Likewise of those denying providence there are many diﬀerent kinds: some absolutely deny providence. as we shall observe in Chapter Ten). a serious omission that will undermine his pupils’ treatment of prophetic literature in particular. Diodore’s linguistic limitations do not allow him to detect the alphabetic structure underlying Ps 25 that could account for his unease about its movement of thought. or to vindicate the LXX’s combining Hebrew Pss 9 & 10 into one psalm. or to acknowledge the diversity in numbering of Pss 114–116 and 147 in Hebrew and Greek. . . censures those claiming that existing things do not beneﬁt from providence. others conﬁne it to heaven. even by a methodical teacher. of the great ﬁnal catastrophe. He repeated the same thought in parallelism. 279. ékolouy¤a (subjectively arrived at by the commentator). It is not until Ps 40:10 that he takes note of one of Hebrew prosody’s stock devices: “I did not conceal your mercy and your truth from a numerous congregation. . so too the present psalm levels an accusation against those who claim that things exist of themselves.”9 he resists any recognition of the wider horizons. diãnoia (certainly not their sentiment. however. When for example the opening verses of Ps 46 (a psalm which he has predetermined is dealing with conﬂict between Ahaz and the northern kingdom) depict “the cosmic upheaval . 8 9 Commentarii. While he spends time in the preface systematically distinguishing diﬀerent genres represented in the psalms. still others to the things of earth and the common lot of humankind.8 Old Testament material originally composed in Hebrew. only that they were made by someone yet are not shown providence. Amongst the latter there emerges a variety of diﬀerences. Psalms 1. Dahood. also being doctrinal. with which individual diﬃculties should be reconciled.” The rhetoricians had taught Diodore to attend primarily to a literary work’s meaning. The dangers of eisegesis in such a procedure are patent. .110 chapter seven This nineteenth psalm is doctrinal: just as the fourth. not actually to each person individually altogether. and thus to conduct commentary in line with the movement of thought. . 108–109.
Diodore feels free to adjust these instances of §nallagØ xrÒnou in the light of his judgement of the proper movement of thought. citing in support Deut 32:15. Theodore will be encouraged to adopt this licence in his own Psalms Commentary. and had often altered them. doing so over a hundred times. To the extent that many of the features of Diodore’s style of commentary reappear in the works of his pupils Theodore and Chrysostom.” it is he and not Lucian who may fairly claim to be its 10 Olivier. without further recourse. intertextuality.” Theodoret will consider Diodore’s oﬀering for “fatness” and diﬀer from it. Cf. Jer 5:28. is not extant here.11 a modern commentator like Dahood will see rather arrogance as the sense. they hemmed in their fatness.13–17 in fact appearing again in the Psalter as Ps 70. “My foes surrounded my soul. On Ps 17:10. 97. ékolouy¤a. who again sees the inﬂuence of the rhetoricians in this habit. but I prefer to speak thus of kindliness and good health. verb forms indicating tense and mood. Untersuchungen. Diodore takes it upon himself on the basis of presumed §nallagØ xrÒnou rather to change mood and tense of ten verbs in these verses in accord with his judgement of the psalmist’s intended ékolouy¤a. giving the sense. Commentarii. thus constituting a considerable group of like-minded scholars we may refer to as a “school. and later in their intellectual protegé Theodoret. does not appear in Diodore’s work here. ci. which in his text reads. reports that Mariès identiﬁed 117 cases of such adjustments. who generally regaled his listeners with such scriptural documentation. one ﬁnds. suggests combination of two diﬀerent pieces. Ps 73:7–8. . Schäublin.10 Ps 40 in the Heb.12 Chrysostom. A feature of the commentary of other Antiochenes.969: “Some commentators gave the name ‘fatness’ to prosperity and good health. Not noting this latter fact. 11 PG 80. 131–32. They abused their own prosperity (the meaning of They hemmed in). “Fatness means the joy and prosperity of life. and unable to check the Hebrew.” Diodore simply comments. is a rather bare commentary.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 111 Diodore’s LXX version had experienced consistent diﬃculty with Heb. The result in Diodore’s case.” 12 Psalms 1. vv. Presuming the discrepancy to be attributable to the author. even when it calls for documentation from elsewhere in the Bible. Perhaps he feels he can rule on the meaning of the psalmist’s phrasing.
”14 B. at least. naming the whole from the part. Photius (perhaps a biased judge) had good grounds for faulting his prolixity. is “le vrai fondateur de l’école d’Antioche. If it should prove necessary to explain some things at greater length in the light of matters that arise.” Paraphrase.16 Most of the psalms. Simonetti must be unfamiliar with the OT commentaries of Theodore to claim. or diãnoia (a psalm’s spiritual appeal again going unnoticed). David lamenting his own sin in Ps 6. with God’s help. however. parts of his commentaries are nothing more than paraphrases of the scriptural text itself. That promise of conciseness we ﬁnd Theodore generally infringing. Biblical Interpretation. “By my ﬂesh he means I myself. is the theme of the present psalm. 16 Le commentaire.” 580. would seem to have right on his side. This. or (though we no longer have the preface he wrote) in diﬀerent genres. 71. the former claiming for Diodore the title “le véritable fondateur. convinced it is a speciﬁcally biblical ﬁgure.15 His procedure is to identify a psalm’s ÍpÒyesiw and focus on its sense.13 therefore. traces back to Lucian the contrast betweeen Alexandrian and Antiochene hermeneutics. on occasion. Theodore We would expect the young Theodore’s style of commenting on the Psalter to resemble his mentor’s. Olivier and not Downey. “Antiochien. Simonetti is correct. the divine Scripture normally referring to the whole person by ﬂesh.” 106. are given a narrative setting and a prÒsvpon for whom David speaks. soul and the like” (Le commentaire. Bardy’s similar term for Diodore. of course. to proceed to plumb its meaning. Our task now is. in pointing to Theodore’s tendency to avoid explanatory comment for paraphrase. as he says on Ps 16:9. He shows little interest in the cultic context of the Psalms’ composition and recital. we shall nevertheless not be unmindful of the conciseness we promised in the preface. the principal penitential The History of Antioch. 337–42. unlike precis. 15 Theodore likes to ﬁnd synecdoche in his text of the Psalms. Commentarii. then. “Interprétation chez les pères. and we are not disappointed. 14 13 .112 chapter seven leader and theirs. “The tendency towards conciseness is such that.” allowing Lucian only “l’initiateur. as with the ﬁrst psalm. ciii. 98). and in the case of Ps 51.” Drewery. 3. can run to considerable length. as determined by Diodore—the people captured by Nebuchadnezzar in Ps 5. which he takes to be moral rather than historical.
where he sees David speaking in the prÒsvpon of Jeremiah under assault from his foes. and interpreting from that is more authoritative than all. Essai sur Théodore de Mopsueste. or the LXX. 56.” The basis for his judgement in these cases. is not to follow up every matter in detail but succinctly to touch on the sense of each statement so as to make possible some illumination of the obvious sense of the text. yet he can presume that his determination of that movement of thought arises from the Heb. leaving those of greater intelligence to add other things if they wish. he comes to v. Schäublin. is ékolouy¤a. as was also Diodore’s criterion. . 3: “Tout démontre. In these cases he will ﬁnd the author responsible. since he lacks a knowledge of Hebrew. not David but the people asking forgiveness on return from captivity. however.” . Devreesse. there is a change in tense as often happens from the translation. lists the instances of §nallagØ xrÒnou in the commentaries on Psalms and The Twelve.8: “He will fall. 195. This form of interpretation happens to be at variance with the Hebrew. Theodore’s rulings on Hebrew usage. and for a reader’s beneﬁt that view is arguably true. en eﬀet. 131–32. Cf. n. A true understanding. though not departing from the interpretation already given. The task set us. as a more precise reader of what follows can ﬁnd from our explanation. itself. Let them fall . . what follows not being in accord with such an interpretation. probably prompted by some source.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 113 psalm of the early Church. Essai. that is. lead Devreesse to change his earlier opinion about Theodore’s knowledge of Hebrew. Now. Theodore feels the freedom Diodore enjoyed of detecting §nallagØ xrÒnou in verb forms. in fact. that frequently he invokes that principle to discharge himself as commentator from the need to background his text (in the way Theodoret will excel) by explicating such items. It is a pity. this practice we shall particularly observe both in the present psalm and in all the others. in comment on Ps 35. Untersuchungen. to make a summary of the overall meaning and thus unfold precisely what has to be said. qu’il n’entendait pas l’hébreu et qu’il ne le voyait qu’à travers des intermédiaires. results in such an insight that we should maintain a sequence of explanation 17 Le commentaire. as he does in disputing an alternative opinion on Ps 36:1: It is in fact actually opposed to the sequence of the interpretation as a whole.17 “The sequence of the interpretation as a whole” is to Theodore more inﬂuential and signiﬁcant than individual textual items. you see. 59–60.
“by the grace of God to bring clarity” to the prophet’s work. Theodoret will work harder on several such diﬃculties in that psalm. as it was not of Diodore’s. Dahood classes as “among the most diﬃcult of the entire Psalter. . Having thus established a narrative setting. geographic or topographical nature. Hill. evidently his next work after the Psalter. he also provides a wider range of scriptural documentation for his readers throughout. He does this by ﬁrst relating each of The Twelve to his historical situation in the order in which they occur in his local text. ÍpÒyesiw. “His Master’s Voice: Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Psalms. Verses 4–5 of Ps 74 in the Heb. and accordingly should propose what ought be said. not of the LXX. Cf. which is the order of the Hebrew.21 in introducing Haggai he does state his overall purpose.18 He chides those who want to apply Ps 72 to both Solomon and Christ for failing to follow correct priorities: The cause of this problem is the fact of some people’s commenting on the words by slavishly keeping to the text (l°jiw) of the psalm and not having an overall view of the meaning (diãnoia) an interpretative stance we would class rather as eisegesis.” The basis of this conclusion is outlined in Chapter Six. cultural.114 chapter seven in faithful accord with history. he clutches at the straw Symmachus’s version oﬀers to develop an ingenious paraphrase. despite his rather superior attitude in introducing 18 19 20 21 Le commentaire. as on the Psalms Theodore is little disposed (at least by comparison with Theodoret) to depth the background of his text by supplying details of an historical.20 While Theodore has likewise left us no comprehensive preface to his Commentary on the Twelve Prophets. either. Psalms 2.”19 yet Theodore simply blames the LXX—“the verse involves great diﬃculty resulting from the translation”—and despairing of relating the verses to the Maccabees (Diodore’s choice before him). 202. and on coming to Haggai he again surveys their placement from the eighth century to the return from exile. As a result the reader at times gets the impression of what might be styled creative commentary when the eﬀort proves too much. 3. intertextuality not being a feature of Theodore’s Commentary.
1. We shall in Chapter Ten observe Theodore responding to the stirring passages on social justice themes to be found in Amos 8. Amos 4:12–13) and recognize some of the literary genres to be found in The Twelve.” 23 22 . ékr¤beia. If in the interests of precision. he asks. who for all his “due preparation” could himself be astray in those historical details he did oﬀer.g. Theodoret will venture to demur (PG 81.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 115 his work “as an indictment of those who presume to apply themselves to the prophetic utterances without due preparation. and for which some commentators had suggested also Tarsus or Rhodes. as in introducing Hosea and Haggai. 178. By contrast. however.23 His predecessors often met with that fate from the young commentator. no matter which city you think it to be.1724). he does in this work unpack images employed by the prophets (e.. or investigate why it is that Malachi is to transmit a word of the Lord to “Israel” long after the fall of that kingdom. “Sartor resartus: Theodore under review by Theodoret. Theodore empathises with the prophet’s satiric purpose and imagery: Where has the lion gone to gain entrance? A very mocking remark: whereas they were ever doing battle and always making an assault on someone somewhere as though on prey of some kind.”22 His readers might have cared to have the commentator locate for them the home towns of prophets. I consider this entire chase after detail to be irrelevant to the subject in hand in so far as the account by the prophet is just as equally beyond question. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. by Hosea 4:19. Hill. but he declined. with the exception of apocalyptic—a serious ﬂaw in commenting on Joel and Zechariah— and the satire intended by the author of Jonah. When Nahum indulges in what modern commentators refer to as a taunt song in 2:11–13. and also by way of education of those coming after. Theodore dismisses the item as a mere exercise in ékribolog¤a: For my part. a virtue of Antiochene commentators. they expected him to pinpoint the location of the Tarshish to which Jonah initially headed. Micah 3 and Zechariah 7 for the beneﬁt of his readers no more sensitively than he had risen to the pathos of some psalms. like Micah’s Moresheth and Nahum’s Elkosh. cf. 5:13–14. Where now Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius.
the disclosure of pleasant things after the experience of harsh things and in turn mentioning baleful events in order that through both they might instruct them by the frequency of the disclosure. 206. There is an end to your ﬁghting. he then mentions also what will happen to them after its capture. bringing them to their senses by the mention of baleful things and encouraging them by the brighter to hold fast to hope in God. he does note the vacillation between gloom and optimism in the prophet. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. This custom of the other prophets and blessed David we have often demonstrated.”26 however.25 Reference to “blessed David” here is typical of the limited intertextuality of this work of Theodore’s as well.” . namely. the Psalms Commentary providing him with the bulk of his limited scriptural documentation. but) only when the hubbub began. Theodore disputes the statement in the text that Jonah ﬂed from God (“he had gone oﬀ to some other place far removed”).116 chapter seven has your leader gone? after what prey has he gone? He means. Such apologetics serve 24 25 26 Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. your former power and might is ﬁnished. however. at least by that stage. After mentioning the disasters being inﬂicted on them to this point. It is the book of Jonah with its “novel and extraordinary things.” An inherited accent on tÚ ﬂstorikÒn prevents Theodore’s realizing that “all attempts to defend the prophet’s reputation . and the degree of change for the better that will ensue. 173. a commentary on Isaiah). Hill. Jonah had every right to be distressed (in 4:1) at Nineveh’s reprieve: he ran the risk of “gaining the reputation for being a sham and a charlatan. a resemblance he does not acknowledge (not having composed. he feels he must rewrite the text. miss the purpose of the book within the canon. that ﬁnds the Achilles’ heel in his approach to prophetic material. When Mic 4:1–4 speaks in terms identical to Isa 2:2–5. . Cf. “Jonah in Antioch. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. and ﬁnds biblical precedent for it. and enjoyed success in Nineveh after a brief call to repentance. he has an eye to this movement in thought by an author. as we saw in Chapter Five. to the temptation to detect and adjust instances of §nallagØ xrÒnou in the text to suit ékolouy¤a as he sees it (as at Joel 2:19–20). 249–50. went below (not on boarding ship. too.24 And while he succumbs in this work. .
philological and historical approach. then. Chrysostom does not abide by Diodore’s ruling on the inauthenticity of psalm titles. Diodore’s and Theodore’s on the Psalms is due to the diﬀerence in genre between works composed at the desk and homilies delivered to a congregation in a church or didaskale›on (and recorded. admittedly. Patrology 3.” 28 27 . and was even Libanius’s preferred candidate to succeed him as Antioch’s oﬃcial rhetorician. a ruling duly accepted by Theodore. Cf. 402: “He wrote commentaries to nearly all the books of the Bible which are remarkable for their free and critical investigations into questions of authorship and date and for their highly scientiﬁc. In Chapter Five we saw him embarking on a lengthy and irrelevant disquisition on inheritances at the opening of commentary on Ps 5 under the mistaken impression that the musical direction about “ﬂutes” in the Heb. Introduction to the Old Testament as Scripture. the diﬀerence in style of commentary from. it also registers the faulty LXX version of the term. fait intervenir la critique littéraire. “For the lilies.”27 On the basis of these two extant Old Testament commentaries. But there is also a sense of independence in departing from the structured approach to a text recommended in the schools. presumably faithfully. This psalm. Childs. you see. we do not gain the impression from his homilies of a dutiful alumnus echoing the accents of his masters. say. and in arriving at a diﬀerent position on critical matters.” And though the text of his commentary on Ps 45 begins by distinguishing the reference in the Heb. “On those to be changed. one would therefore have to nuance the extravagant claims that have been made for Theodore as a literary critic. Devreessee. 58: “Théodore. Essai.28 C. by stenographers). He was the ﬁrst to apply literary criticism to the solution of textual problems.” as though from shanah. title derived instead from the verb “inherit. 426.’ He worked a B.” Quasten. To an extent. and he pays the penalty for the extra risk to which this independence exposes him. hence it bears the title ‘for the beloved’ and ‘those to be changed. was composed with Christ in mind. S. leading Chrysostom to begin.” shoshanim. le premier et vraisemblablement le seul des anciens commentateurs.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 117 to weaken rather than enhance the truth of the book. title to a melody. John Chrysostom Though Chrysostom also sat at Diodore’s feet.
what could anyone adequately say in describing that day. or narrative setting). like that of Ps 7 mentioning the encounter between David and Hushai. when the way leads down to hell. Most High. fearsome. both transformation and alteration in circumstances. there is a new creation’ (2 Cor 5:17). when all rank counts for naught—kings. when swords are drawn. He is also aware that Ps 44 was generally taken to refer to the Maccabees. when he makes public each one’s deeds done in darkness. 10. when the rivers of ﬁre are made to ﬂow. Paul. when a host of angels appears. when all things tremble. when powers are menacing. priests.1. thrust) and prÒsvpon (person. remember. by contrast. see Hill. Diodore and his servile pupil decide relates to a Maccabees’ victory in the time of Antiochus and is uttered in their person. point of view) in the style religiously adopted by Diodore and Theodore. St John Chrysostom. viceroys.183. prophets. 26. including the call in the opening verses to praise the Most High God. when he sends his angels everywhere throughout the world. when ranks of martyrs. when the myriad bodies rise. when retribution and punishment are unbearable. Rather. too.30 Ps 47. generals. apostles. ‘So that if anyone is in Christ. for example. Hence the psalmist says. 30 When a psalm title refers to an historical incident. suggests this change in the words. when that fearful tribunal is established. and gives a succinct account of that chapter in Israel’s history. Commentary on the Psalms I. when the sky shrinks like a shrunken veil. skopÒw (purpose. Chrysostom. . on the contrary. For other instances. when the earth is confused to be surrendering the dead in its keeping. supremos. relating psalm and individual verses to the narrative setting and central character thus determined. which they curtly bypass. 29 PG 55.118 chapter seven great change in us. monks. when the books are opened. after citing a number of alternative versions of these verses—a further departure from his fellows’ practice—simply launches into one of his ﬁnest oratorical crescendos that must have vastly impressed the congregation. Chrysostom can go to great lengths to turn the incident into a moral lesson.29 Chrysostom generally feels under no obligation to subject particular psalms to historical categorization according to ÍpÒyesiw (theme.
.211. the opportunity is taken to exploit the sentiments of the psalmist for the beneﬁt of appreciative listeners. which at Easter (as today) “the Fathers prescribed for singing (Íphke›u) by the congregation. 31 32 PG 55. whereas the one approaching it with precision will see the sense and precise sequence of the ideas. as we shall see in Chapter Ten being adopted by Chrysostom though neglected by his fellow Antiochenes of that century. his responsibility lies in the direction of comprehension (which does not center on a psalm’s supposed historical background): of Ps 44:12 he remarks. we must address ourselves to the whole psalm. Psalms I. trophies and wreaths. ÍpakoÆ. “The verse seems to be extremely unclear. Diodore and Theodore never moralize. The apocalyptic character of that crescendo also alerts us to Chrysostom’s awareness of the psalm genre and liturgical Sitz im Leben. 289–90.32 but for Chrysostom it is a cause of great bewilderment in the person who reads it casually.” He cannot allow himself the luxury of explaining only the responsorium. and thus escape the criticism we have seen Chrysostom incurring for a moral slant. Because there was the danger that “those singing it daily and uttering the words by mouth do not enquire about the force of the ideas underlying the words. even if this be a particularly signiﬁcant one like v. as far as church practice in Antioch required. . and are not just a text. The congregation was expected to sing at least a responsorial verse.2. yet pay attention so that your singing (cãllein) may be done with understanding.” Before the diﬃcult verses with which the Psalter teems. that psalms are for singing. like the opening verse of Ps 42.” he says at the opening of commentary on Ps 141. . in that regard they do not intrude into the preacher’s domain.24 of Ps 118. .antiochene approach to the task of commentary when rewards are past telling. Ps 48:2 may have light shed on it from Ugaritic by a commentator like Dahood. Chrysostom like his fellows can fall to rationalizing when their modern counterparts have recourse to linguistic data. when the good things surpass all understanding?31 119 There is here not simply a diﬀerence in hermeneutical perspective.
He knows. Be angry. That is to say.1. Cf. sugkatãbasiw. He calls the nation his inheritance. not as though disregarding the others. and again. he rids their spirit of ailments. . “I could not speak to you as spiritual persons but as carnal persons. And Hosea: “Sow seeds of righteousness for yourselves. you see. ékr¤beia. what you say in your heart. . see how he employs the expression of common people.” and again.4). his aﬃnity for them. in his case seeing it as an eﬀect of the divine considerateness. since his intention is to lead them to knowledge of God. a principle of Chrysostom’s exegesis. “This people seek me. Chrysostom’s commentary could never be called bare on this score. light the light of knowledge” (Hos 10:12 Grk). “Whoever does shoddy things hates the light and does not move to 33 34 PG 55.33 No detail of the text is without signiﬁcance. an apparently superﬂuous phrase in the opening verse of Ps 44 is shown to be relevant: Why did he not say simply (èpl«w) ‘We have heard’ but We have heard with our ears? With what other part of the body does one hear? Surely the words are superﬂuous? Far from it: it is a common practice with human beings .213. manifest both in sacred history and in the inspired text. where the normal language of human intercourse is employed to convey a divine message. “As though to infants in Christ I fed you milk. For you to learn the inspired precision. “Akribeia. Hill. and do not sin. “On this matter we have much to say that is hard to explain. So that is what Paul too was suggesting in saying. as on the psalm that begins the series. repent of at bedtime (v. Ps 4. that a corrupt life proves an obstacle to elevated thinking.4. and desire to know my ways. he esteems like Antiochene and other commentators. rendering their commentary bare. but to give evidence of the extent of his love. and the added gift of his providence. since you are slow to understand” (Heb 5:11). Isaiah as well. . like a people that have practised righteousness and not forsaken my ordinance” (Isa 58:2). which they adopt in matters of commerce.168.” PG 55. On Ps 47:4 he comments.34 A feature we noted missing from the treatment of the Psalter by Diodore and Theodore was documentation from other parts of Scripture.120 chapter seven Precision. What I said before I repeat now. Christ in his teaching said. not solid food” (1 Cor 3:1–2). intertextuality can be so generously adopted as to submerge the verse under comment.
John Chrysostom 1. fearing they would be put out of the synagogue” ( John 9:22). Young. Photius. 38 Cf.” 62. whereas in the longer series of sixty seven homilies it is the whole book that has to be covered systematically. even if it takes all of Lent to treat of twelve chapters and—after a break on the book of Acts—then resume at Pentecost. 49. reported that engagement with the listeners was such during the Gen homilies that in his view they should be called not lÒgoi but ımil¤ai (Bibliotheca 172). “Many came to believe in him. the abundance of citation may be a mark of immaturity (if not of editorial embellishment). we noted. or perhaps a diﬀerence in venue and purpose. Hill. Biblical Exegesis.38 These two series also diﬀer from each other in purpose: in the short series in 386 Chrysostom clearly has no intention of following closely the text. 37 As conveyed by Dorival. we saw him upbraiding them in one series for allowing a lamplighter to distract them from his words. even of Gen 1–3. “How can you have faith when you accept praise from one another and do not seek praise from the one who alone is God?” ( John 5:44). so that the consequent haste by the preacher to reach a conclusion can by contrast result in the complete omission of scriptural reference. and again.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 121 the light” ( John 3:20). 35 PG 55. 223. 36 Baur. 115. “L’apport des chaînes. in which Photius noticed what Baur would later call a higher degree of an “appearance of actuality.35 While it is a rich scriptural fare oﬀered to his congregation. as in the case of Pss 44.”36 are to a correspondingly less extent characterised by intertextuality as also by reference to alternative versions of the biblical text—features that may be thought by some (such as Mercati)37 to suggest later editing of the Psalms homilies. It is therefore perhaps not surprising that Chrysostom’s homilies and sermons on Genesis. It can lead to disproportion in treatment of psalms.7. and on account of the Pharisees did not confess their faith” ( John 12:42). “His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jews. 45. It is clear that in both the Genesis series (as in the homilies on the Statues) the preacher engages more closely with his congregation(s). on Chrysostom’s manner of allusion to Scripture. In all these cases you could see a corrupt life proving an impediment to committed belief. and again. “On giving up the horses for Lent. Cf. while in the other he devotes much of Homily 6 to chastising absentees for abandoning him for a day at the races. and again.50.” .
he did not say simply. Notice the precision of the teaching. God caused drowsiness to come upon Adam. the Holy Spirit through his tongue. he accordingly makes a precise distinction: he did not say simply.40 The precision of the text requires precision in the commentator. Far from his being able to claim even this. it is possibly his longwinded treatment. Let us see.222. the text says. teaching us the sequence of what happened.122 chapter seven As with many a preacher. Let us make him a helpmate.4.328. in fact. and departure from his text in the short series that makes the lamplighter’s activity more interesting to a bored congregation. but Let us make him a helpmate like him. and as also with many a preacher.1. like the provision of a helpmate for the man in 2:18 who is not (he insists) the same as the animals: Lest you say so. thus having to gallop towards the end. did the brigand say? what did he do? did he fast? did he weep? did he tear his garments? did he display repentance in good time? Not at all: on the cross itself after his utterance he won salvation. Still. however. What. from condemnation to salvation. . rather. It wasn’t simply drowsiness that came 39 40 SC 433. he can entrance his listeners with his golden mouth. No helpmate was found for him. This blessed author had stipulated both things—or. Note the rapidity: from cross to heaven. the text says. and he slept (2:21). then? what great power did they have that they brought him such marvelous good things? “Remember me in your kingdom” (Luke 23:42). on the basis of faith alone. too. and he slept. he proceeds at a more leisurely pace early in the long series. he made his way into paradise before the apostles with a mere word. SC 433.39 In the little time he addresses the Gen text in the short series. Likewise here. whether the brigand gave evidence of eﬀort and upright deeds and a good yield. but No helpmate like him was found for him. What were those wonderful words. Chrysostom is still alert to details he ﬁnds signiﬁcant. makrolog¤a. the intention being for you to learn that it was not so much a case of his sound values prevailing as the Lord’s lovingkindness being completely responsible. Chrysostom labors the point in the corresponding passage in Homily 15 in the longer series: God caused drowsiness to come upon him. even while himself digressing in Sermon 7 to examine the fate of the repentant brigand on the cross.
.120.2.” 43 In acknowledging Theodoret’s conciseness.2): “The mouths of the inspired authors are the mouth of God. instead the wise and skilful Creator of our nature was about to remove one of Adam’s ribs . Accordingly. if not always expressing it so eloquently—or at such length. the second homily on Isa 6 (SC 277. . From two points of view it is a hazard and a pitfall. on the Song of Songs. are we to say—that the prophet lied? But that is perilous: they are God’s words he utters. Photius makes a generous estimate of his abilities as a commentator (Bibliotheca 203): “On the whole. 42 41 . let there be nothing idle in our attention.”44 In Chapter Five we noted Theodoret acknowledging not only the inﬂuence of Chrysostom but a long list of other predecessors on the Song. unless we read the verse soberly. such a mouth would say nothing idle. and it would not be easy to ﬁnd anyone better at elucidating obscure points. he reached the top level of commentators. It is basic to his reprimand of those who were less than precise in quoting Jer 10:23 (and snatches of other scriptural verses) to their own ends: Hence the need to give precise attention to the text. the fact that nothing that is the result of the divine Spirit’s action is said idly and to no purpose” (a phrase occurring endless times in Chrysostom) “is clear to people of a sober and pious mind.43 He begins his ﬁrst piece of commentary. in fact. either. and it is a feature of his biblical commentary that he allows himself to be indebted to those from PG 53.48–49. by querying the apparent tautology in that title: “After all.92.41 There would hardly be a homily of Chrysostom where this point is not made.156. as a consequence of his concept of the nature of the Scriptures. What. he shares Chrysostom’s view.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 123 upon him nor normal sleep.42 This was not a conviction that Chrysostom learnt from pagan rhetoricians.” 44 PG 81. Theodoret Those rhetoricians were not the source of the same conviction in Theodoret’s case.” and he begs the reader’s forgiveness “should the commentary not strike you as precise. Cf. D. PG 56.2. conciseness being his rule of thumb.
not only an openness to a range of resources and critical opinions. and providing to each the appropriate nourishment. Viciano.” he elaborates on the image. 45 . “Your lips distil a honeycomb. skopÒw. in the case of the Song and other works attention is given to ÍpÒyesiw. ﬁlling them with the honey of doctrine and dispatching them to us for our beneﬁt. He is responsive to the lavish imagery of the Song. The letter resembles the honeycomb. the sacred prophets and apostles. which contain bees that make honeycombs and produce honey. but also an independent spirit. milk ﬂowing from their tongue reaches those in need of milk. with its own explicit sexuality. honeycombs borne on the lips of the teachers are the divine Scriptures. in the case of the Song he acknowledges the opinions of “the holy fathers” but is ready to admit that “I am inclined to the view . diãnoia. and as well he supplies a foreword or synthesis. as it were. Yet he is also aware of the dictates of the grammarians and rhetoricians to which his own school had been exposed. . using diﬀerent names for diﬀerent realities.124 chapter seven beyond Antioch. “Even in the Old Testament the divine Scripture says many things in a ﬁgurative manner. these latter ﬂy about the meadows of the Holy Spirit. .45 We observed above that Theodoret brought particular gifts to the task of commentary. surveying a range of them before identifying the Song as an epithalamium: “Solomon the sage composed a song that was not for triumph in battle or for morning prayer but for a wedding. Here it refers to the teachers of the church. of course. if the Christian commentator is to rebut the accusation of its being erotic. proy°vr¤a.” The challenge of the Song. as it were constructing the honeycombs of the divine scriptures. and capable of improving on it. carrying honeycomb of bees on its lips.” 46 PG 81. bride. and distilling drops of honey. oﬀering religious teaching and. both suited to the infants and adapted to the mature. Now. honey and milk are under your tongue. containing not only honey but also milk. Also.” He is also sensitive to literary genres. Theodoret begins with that general principle.46 Cf.141. “ ÑO skopÚw t∞w ãlhye¤aw: Théodoret de Cyr et ses principes herméneutiques dans le prologue du Cantique des Cantiques. while the sense hidden in it resembles the honey. is to prove that it accords with the Bible’s use of allegory and other ﬁgurative devices. when he comes to 4:11. the lips of pious teachers release the drops of this honey.” and he proceeds to develop at great length in his preface Ezekiel’s allegory of Jerusalem as an abject waif.
“Our mouth was opened to you Corinthians” (2 Cor 6:11). “l’oeuvre classique of a bishop who regales his people with the knowledge to which he himself has access. Rondeau’s verdict on this commentary. always and everywhere I carry you about in my 47 Praef.” and that people generally “gain serenity for themselves from the harmony of the poetry. and the soul not managing to conceal it in silence. (David) employs not only prophetic discourse but also parenetic and legal discourse as well. Hence also Paul’s statement of his love to the Corinthians. This is the way with lovers. His classiﬁcation of them shows signs of inﬂuence of Diodore’s preface.g. in another he foretells the salvation of the nations.47 He characteristically unpacks the psalms’ imagery without warming to those whose religious sentiments have moved generations of singers and readers. even while frequently recognising a sacramental reference in a psalm (e. so my soul longs for you. in one place he laments the misfortunes of the Jews. instead. and to those ready to attend he oﬀers great satisfaction from the variety of inspired composition. but plumbed by Chrysostom for its personal intimacy in these terms: What. even if we shall have to examine in the next chapter whether or not Antioch’s hermeneutical principles are being respected. The poetry of the Psalms is also in good hands when Theodoret later comes to comment on them. sometimes dogmatic. This psalm is simply assigned an historical setting by Theodoret (like Diodore and Theodore before him) and recited in the person of the people in Babylon. I am unable to keep to myself and be silent on my love. not to keep their love a secret but to communicate it to the neighbor and say they are in love. but evinces also from other predecessors a readiness—unlike Diodore— to adopt a Christological interpretation. it is the passion and the resurrection of Christ the Lord he is predicting.” The bishop of Cyrus. then.” . O God.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 125 The poetry of Solomon does not suﬀer at the hands of this commentator. is the introduction? As the deer longs for the springs of water. that is. Cf. Ps 23:5). Les commentaires I. (PG 80. like Ps 42.. love by nature being an ardent thing. sometimes the teaching he oﬀers is moral. however. with an eye to an historical ÍpÒyesiw. Frequently. shows little interest in any liturgical Sitz im Leben of the psalms in the manner of a Mowinckel.861). however. He begins by acknowledging that the Psalter is the staple spiritual diet of “those who embrace religious life and recite it aloud at night and in the middle of the day. 137.
As the deer longs for springs of water. we have seen. does not belong to the longer series of ﬁfty eight. Biblical Exegesis. these Antiochene pastors at their desk (as distinct from a preacher in his pulpit with congregation before him) saw it as their responsibility. devoted only to the opening two verses of the psalm. waterless and desolate” (Ps 63:1). but to oﬀer their readers “some beneﬁt in concentrated form. and learn to love in similar fashion. as we shall see in Chapter Ten. since he is incapable of demonstrating his love. my soul thirsted for you like a trackless waste. cannot bear to keep silent. 51 Guinot. are generally oﬀered a rich scriptural fare (exceptions being certain psalms with which he feels no aﬃnity. “O God my God. for instance. he goes about searching for an example so as to convey his feelings to us. In other words.” 49 In the interests of ékr¤beia. in turning from Old Testament lyrical material to Daniel and Ezekiel in particular after work on the Song Theodoret as commentator has to change gear.48 It is not that Theodoret does not invoke alternative versions.”50 and even if he is not one to shirk an exegetical challenge.3. accepts that it must be Theodore’s work on the . L’Exégèse. He does not accept the judgement of the Hebrew Bible that the book of Daniel sits rather amongst the Writings as a collection of haggadic tales and apocalyptic visions than among the Latter Prophets. if only in that manner. 50 Young. His readers.126 chapter seven mind and on my tongue.49 Even if it is true that “the Antiochenes were fascinated by prophecy. or lend depth to the text with an intertextual approach. This homily. Let us take his word for it. that Ps 1 is lacking a title. O God. It is just that.159. 746–47. then. loving God and on ﬁre with love. not to expatiate on the Psalms’ spiritual riches. Theodoret notes. “What 48 PG 55. in fact. but at one time says. and makes us sharers in the love. “For what purpose did nations rage?” and that in Ps 37:20 the LXX reads “but” for the “and” of Aquila and Symmachus. 168. So he is immediately involved in controversy with Jewish adversaries (or with a Ioudaiophrôn like Theodore) who “cordon oﬀ this author from the band of the prophets and strip him of the prophetic title itself. and at another.” such as by concise exposition of content and precise recognition of textual detail. Hill. Likewise also this blessed man. which he leaves quite bare of reference to other parts of the Bible). as another of the translators likewise said. that there is a deﬁnite article missing in Ps 2:1. “Psalm 41(42): a classic text for Antiochene spirituality. like the Pilgrim Songs Pss 120–34.”51 and addresses to them the question. so my soul longs for you. Cf. for you I watch at break of day.
1340. as he had improved on Solomon’s and David’s imagery. So much for precision. We praise you for causing the sky to produce stars for us like a meadow. He begins like a good Antiochene: “Let us ﬁrst make clear the ÍpÒyesiw of the inspired work. as well as that of his brother Polychronius of Apamea. and then in this fashion come to the textual (katå l°jin) commentary. While his readers may have expected also some initial sketch of the book’s structure. however.” and so he sets the scene in sixth century Babylon. illuminating the day with the sun and blending the darkness of the night with the moon. 54 PG 81. 53 Swept up in the haggadic tale. We praise and highly exalt you for bringing us kindnesses through angels. entertaining no thought (we noted in Chapter Five) of there being diﬀerent parts of the book composed by diﬀerent authors in a later age. an (impossible) task which we saw distracted him from a critical approach to the text. . Who could adequately sing your praises on seeing the changes. his relish for the lyrical section leads him to embellish it. And when in the text of Dan 3 (Theodotion’s version) he comes to the song of the three (young)53 men. . feeding our eyes on unfading blooms. and through their course providing us with knowledge of the stages of the night. 52 PG 81.1260. they could not complain that the commentator does not enter into the spirit of the haggadic tales in the book’s ﬁrst half. and teaching us the periods of time.” as he puts it. .antiochene approach to the task of commentary 127 do you claim is typical of a prophet?” Having accepted without question the reply. Theodoret chooses not to advert to the time reference in 3:1 (Theod. that there is no certainty that Theodore did proceed beyond his work on The Twelve to compose such commentaries.) to Nebuchadnezzar’s eighteenth year. the alterations in the seasons. would have matured somewhat.54 Within this “willing suspension of disbelief ” Theodoret proceeds in customary fashion to commend the biblical author for his ékr¤beia as a guarantee of the work’s being true prophecy: major prophets.”52 Theodoret is intent throughout the commentary on establishing that Daniel measures up to this prospective notion of prophecy by validating the chronology and dramatis personae of the whole book. “Foreseeing and foretelling the future. . that Theodoret is rebutting as promoting a Jewish point of view. for creating heaven for our sake. We note in Chapter Six. when the “youngsters in the very springtime of their lives.
”56 It is a pity that such a painstaking commentator should have embarked on an impossible task.” where the commentator is desperate to get the names and dates and reigns to add up—without success. his Antiochene mentors did not equip him adequately to distinguish prophecy from haggadah and apocalyptic. probably accessed through Eusebius. then went on. on the contrary. and make available to all religious people the value drawn from it. Again he begins by relating the prophet to his historical situation by nominating the work’s ÍpÒyesiw: Let us venture upon a commentary on the divinely-inspired Ezekiel.” he further backgrounds his text. So come now. put my trust in the divine Scripture.3. 57 Jewish Antiquities 10. after saying the ﬁrst captivity happened in the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah. recognizes the indebtedness to the Onomasticon of Eusebius.1396. In the second year of his reign Nebuchadnezzar had a dream (2:1). topographical and religious details. geographical.57 He is equally anxious to get the PG 81. attempt to plumb the depths of the prophecy as far as is possible for us. taking issue with an equally partial Josephus: “The word of Josephus is completely incredible. before the commentary let us outline the narrative setting in summary form.128 chapter seven Blessed Daniel. L’Exégèse. In turning to Ezekiel. Guinot.6. but for us to get a precise grasp of the time as well. 56 55 . Refuting the claim that the book is “shrouded in obscurity. In his thorough survey of Theodoret’s sources in chronological. then. This is the reason the divine prophets in mentioning the kings also record the number of years. by leading his readers at the outset through the maze of late Judah’s kings and their alternate names. Inevitably. initially sketching the succession of kings of Judah at the fall of Jerusalem and their alternative names—Jehoahaz/Shallum.55 He goes to his usual trouble to background the text for his readers. as in Daniel. I for my part. Jehoiachin/Jeconiah. this careful backgrounding and precision come to grief at the beginning of Dan 6 with that ﬁgment of the author’s imagination. “Darius the Mede. adding this further detail not without purpose. Theodoret labors under a similar handicap.1285. PG 81. Eliakim/ Jehoiakim. wresting from Josephus the detail that Jehoiakim was left unburied by Nebuchadnezzar. where the apocalyptic genre ﬁgures again. 631–799.
not a bodily one.1201). they are identiﬁed at once with the Scythian nations.1220).antiochene approach to the task of commentary 129 measurements of the Temple to compute that were conveyed in a vision in the ﬁnal eight chapters of the book. which he like his modern counterparts senses is an addendum. and their interpretation is in accord with the prophecy. drawing pleasure from it but not the knowledge of the way to play it.1152). Though he can appreciate the author’s imagery as well as ever. .” Theodoret paraphrases the image. Ezekiel 20–48. we intend to give in summary form a kind of paraphrase of what was revealed in spiritual fashion to the divinely-inspired prophet. O prophet. as it had Theodore on The Twelve. His unease about these ﬁnal chapters emerges in his brevity of treatment and the paucity of intertextuality. The Gog and Magog of chs 38–39 have to be supplied with “a local habitation and a name” like any other historical characters. they do not entice the soul addicted to wickedness” (PG 81. “(Ezekiel’s) hearers functioned as a concert audience rather than a congregation. however.” he cannot make a similar allowance for apocalyptic material. but which unlike them he is unable to allow to be the work of others. concerned for the maintenance of “narrative coherence” (in the words of Frances Young) and beneﬁting in this case from his knowledge of Old Testament Judaism. 59 When in Ezek 33:32 the Lord describes the exiles listening idly to the prophet’s advice “like the sound of a sweet and melodious harp.60 58 On 40:1 (PG 81. 154. C. Allen does no better.” 60 On 38:7–8 (PG 81. only charm their ears. Typically he worries about burdening his readers with length of treatment here: Lest. so too your words. and Theodoret’s Antiochene predecessors are cited with approval in support of an historical interpretation of these ﬁgures in refutation of a commentator like Apollinaris who would deny them historical status: After the return from Babylon (those who were lately teachers of the Church claim) these nations advanced on Israel. taking prophecy in a prospective sense. It is the inability to recognize and respond to apocalyptic that again brings Theodoret undone. A modern commentator L.58 It is all standard Antiochene commentary. by length of discourse we wear out the readers of this book by commenting on every detail.59 and allow the vision of the New Temple described in the ﬁnal chapters to be “a spiritual vision. “Like people listening to an instrument producing harmonious music.
the faithful by a revelation then left the city.” He forecast this also in blessed Zechariah.” as he says in the preface. by Didymus in Alexandria and by his fellow Antiochene Theodore.” He is attentive to detail. in the one case. Christ the Lord also gave that advice in the divine Gospels. The Dawn of Apocalyptic. The story is that when Vespasian and Titus were on the point of attacking. Sur Zacharie (SC 85. in the latter case he conﬂates the text of Luke 21:20 and Mark 13:14–15. Theodoret’s Commentary on the Twelve Prophets appeals to us by comparison with two of those to which he had access. . looks to Eusebius for a “story” with encouragement from Didymus. cf. But apocalyptic motifs like the Day of the Lord in Joel and the sweeping scenario of “full-blown apocalyptic”61 in Zechariah 14:1–2 escape him. and its willingness to adopt a longer hermeneutical perspective than the Ioudaiophrôn. Historia Ecclesiastica 3.3.5. only to ﬁnd him in similar fashion beginning the for61 62 63 Hanson. 369. if more extended than Theodore’s ﬁnding a fulﬁlment in Zerubbabel and Maccabees.62 and (possibly inﬂuenced by Cyril) adopts a New Testament perspective which.63 It would be otiose to continue documenting this pattern of commentary in Theodoret’s ﬁnal work on the prophetic corpus. on Haggai in The Twelve and on the Psalms.1076–80). know that its end is nigh. Didymus. appreciative of his predecessors. on Isaiah and Jeremiah.1952. PG 81. for its serious approach to the historical situation of the prophets. in this he resembles and is indebted to Cyril. as in introducing Hosea and Habakkuk. “When you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies. “using the divine word like a lamp. and the one on the roof not go down to get something from the house. He will follow his habit of outlining a book’s ÍpÒyesiw and skopÒw. then let those in Judea ﬂee to the mountains. The ﬂaws in this style of commentary on prophetic material predictably emerge again when the authors have recourse to apocalyptic. his purpose as always is “to make clear for the readers the thinking of the Twelve Prophets. and responsive to the prophets’ ﬁgurative language. tolerant of Theodore’s outburst against Syriac translators (of Zechariah) if impatient with his Jewishness at times. is more limited than usual.130 chapter seven Theodoret will hold to this view in his next two works.
without attention also to those puzzling sections of the Old Testament. 66 Bardy. Before everything else we shall enunciate the work’s ÍpÒyesiw. In closing that work. Guinot. knowledgeable of Judaism. a vraisemblablement été sa source unique.” 582. the Octateuch especially and Kingdoms & Chronicles. The work of this pastor was not complete even in advanced years.” 42 (1933) 224–25. Theodoret of Cyrus.3 on Genesis. occupies several questions. particularly Diodore. Commentary on the Letters of St Paul I. 794: “Il a trouvé en Diodore de Tarse le modèle auquel il emprunte la plus grande partie de son information. but failing to recognize apocalyptic elements in sections of the book like 2:12. obviously to satisfy readers’ interest. tolerant of others’ views. Though it seems that in responding to “questions” Theodoret is following a series of items determined to some extent by previous users of this genre.”64 It had been a remarkable achievement in the cause of introducing Antiochene readers to the Latter Prophets. It is clearly the same Antiochene commentator at work in these two sets of Questions. thanks to God’s grace. L’Exégèse. “Interprétation chez les pères. however.” he informs them in reply to Q. The creation of the angels. The bareness and extreme conciseness of the Jeremiah Commentary (including Baruch and Lamentations). si l’on excepte les QG. Theodoret could justly feel content in “thus leaving not even a single piece of prophecy without comment. See Hill. in this way the commentary on individual sections will be visible at a glance. 65 64 . attentive to detail. 3. In his Commentary on Paul’s letters and elsewhere Theodoret comments on the widespread cult of the angels. et qui. “La littérature patristique. are probably due to its process of transmission.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 131 mer (where he is heavily indebted to Cyril and other Alexandrian predecessors) with the commitment.65 “yet I shall state what I believe is in keeping with the skopÒw of the divine Scripture. Cf. as was mentioned above.805. 14:2 and the so-called Isaian Apocalypse 24–27. where in some cases predecessors had not ventured before.66 the “modéré” Theodoret does not dogmatize when the biblical author is not speciﬁc: PG 81. while displaying the above typical features of Theodoret’s approach to a biblical text (which in our view corroborate its claim to authenticity).” The epithet “modéré” applied to Theodoret is also Bardy’s.
68 Q. there is no attempt to sensationalize pericopes like the sun’s standing still in Josh 10:12–13 or David’s slaying of Goliath in 1 Sam 17. and Ruth for the ﬁrst time comes in for comment.” By their attention to ÍpÒyesiw. as outlined in Chapter Six. though leaving to this stage a decision on his further caveat about patristic commentators. Theodoret concludes his contribution to the biblical tradition of the faith in Antioch shortly before his death around 460. After a unique Commentary in Greek on the books of Chronicles. The bishop may be forgiven for waxing eloquent on liturgical matters.68 Theodoret diﬀers both from Origen and from Eustathius in maintaining that the vision was real and the prophecy was real. in fact. commentary they are conducting on these books. Reading of the Old Testament in the course of that tradition was extensive. And we have now identiﬁed features of the commentary on it conducted by Antiochene pastors orally and in writing.67 Despite some such limitations on his freedom to deal with textual issues. of the Octateuch and of Kingdoms and Chronicles is comprehensive (with the reservations voiced in Chapter Five about Theodoret’s stance on critical matters of exegesis). and so a priori both were God’s work. having despite his age not stinted attention to all parts of a further huge portion of the Bible in this Questions genre.63 on 1 Sam. I have stated what I gathered is in keeping with religious thinking. the Antiochene commentators kept their focus on the thrust of the material. my view being that it is rash to speak dogmatically on what the divine Scripture is not clear in stating. “Interprétation chez les pères. even if they diﬀered in their readiness to supply background for items in 67 The compliment “modéré” is paid to Theodoret by Bardy. . êpora. On the matter of Saul’s vision of Samuel in the encounter with the witch of Endor in 1 Sam 28.132 chapter seven I do not state this dogmatically. rather. not exegesis strictly speaking. skopÒw and diãnoia. such as Temple construction. it can be said that the coverage of the key diﬃculties. At the outset we acknowledged Kelly’s reminder of this. with which he is well acquainted.” 582. It is. measurements and furnishings. thus bringing to a close our period under examination. and aiming at promoting the readers’ comprehension in particular. that they “could not understand the nature of Old Testament writings.
We may conclude in general. or given to. on the other hand.antiochene approach to the task of commentary 133 the biblical text and illuminate it from other parts of the Bible. Hebrew prosody presented a diﬀerent challenge that often escaped them. In short. they brought to the task their own theology of the inspired Word. though in the ﬁfth century Theodoret will prove more independent and eclectic. there is a degree of adherence to principles expounded by Diodore in his Psalms preface. the utterances of lawgivers and poets. To the ways of interpreting the Old Testament in Antioch we should now turn. prophets and historians. If the Antiochenes owed something of this methodical style to pagan rhetoricians. apocalyptic. that readers in Antioch thus stood to come to a deeper understanding of the Old Testament than those in churches where commentators were less inclined to take the text at face value. it is possible to identify an Antiochene style of commentary on the Old Testament. This enrichment emerges also in the levels of meaning that could be found in. however. . displaying an enriching openness to other inﬂuences. consistently resisted their approach. and even if one particular literary genre.
prophets. “You had Law. the biblical tradition of the faith in Antioch gave ample place to interpreting the works of the prof∞tai. For all the obscurity of these Old Testament texts. written in Dec. priests. Kingdoms and Chronicles to that impressive corpus. For all their resentment against Jews of their time. . for example. all the Antiochenes agree: the Jewish Scriptures are intended for the formation of Christians as well.857). and Theodore may have done likewise. the divine Temple and worship according to the Law. they never question the gift represented by the literature and institutions of ancient Judaism. 448 (SC 98. That would be to their detriment. Ep. the psalms and the apostle. while people are in the habit of reciting and singing them. acknowledging the diﬃculty presented by the Psalms. even if little of their work has survived. and regretting that. (PG 80.”3 proceeding to add Octateuch. as Theodoret paraphrases Ezek 16:51.202). We need to examine the levels of meaning 1 2 3 Praef. we still have a hundred and ﬁfty on Old Testament books. 82 to Eusebius of Ancyra. we are told. Theodoret even reversed these priorities by his claim late in life to have commented on “all the prophets. they do not always “recognize the sense of the words they sing.592. then.”2 Diodore evinced his esteem for these compositions by writing commentaries on them all.”1 as Theodoret laments in his time. and though Chrysostom wrote formally on the topic of Old Testament obscurity. like modern commentators. though this can be adduced as a reproach to later generations of Jews. it is probably due to the commitment they have to elucidating the obvious sense of the text and bringing their readers to comprehend it. We have seen them. and for all the exegetical limitations of the commentators.CHAPTER EIGHT INTERPRETING THE OLD TESTAMENT IN ANTIOCH If admissions of the obscurity of the Old Testament come more readily to commentators in Antioch. and his homilies on the New Testament are more celebrated. PG 81.
A distinctively Antiochene approach The deeper theological underpinning of the pastoral commitment to explication of the Old Testament was.136 chapter eight they found in them. “Chrysostom on the obscurity of the Old Testament. 94. 16. Hill. and the exegetical (sic) school of Alexandria with him. in determining what the Spirit was saying in those more ancient. and we saw in Chapter Three Chrysostom’s many such statements of the common source of both testaments. beginning—notoriously—with that obvious sense. Eustathius von Antiochien und Gregor von Nyssa über die Hexe von Endor. Ultimately. more variegated. more oblique compositions. even fundamentalist.” Theodoret says in comment on Isaiah 8:13–14. The question arises as to whether their hermeneutic can be classed as literalist. 32. modern writers have this aspect of biblical commentary in mind when contrasting Antiochene “exegesis” with that of other schools. Golden Mouth. That it was a distinctive and contrasting manner of interpreting the Old Testament is clear already from Eustathius’s criticism of Origen and his followers (speciﬁcally in respect of the incident of Saul’s consultation of the witch of Endor in 1 Sam 28) for “concentrating not on the facts (prãgmata). but on the words (ÈnÒmata). that Origen. A. 6 Christian Antioch.”5 The criticism has been rephrased by WallaceHadrill thus. We noted in Chapter Five that it is not uncommon to ﬁnd . we disputed above Kelly’s judgement that the Gospels proved more opaque to ancient commentators.” 5 Origenes.4 As in its style of commentary on the Old Testament. The challenge lay. of course. the pastors’ conviction of the divine inspiration of the authors and their text: “The same Spirit gave voice through both the Old Testament and the New Testament tongue. as we noted.6 4 Cf. of the Scriptures to be found.” élÆyeia. however. Kelly. as they should. but not staying at that level. a thesis Chrysostom also rejected in his homilies on the subject of obscurity. the further question arises as to where the Antiochenes judged the “truth. or simply literal. so in its hermeneutics Antioch distinguished itself from other interpreters to such a degree that. lack the speciﬁcally historical cast of mind without which an exegete (sic) is hardly fully-equipped to handle the Old Testament.
” 404. prãgmata. A. Viciano. for their part. spatio-temporal understanding of texts. his criticism is leveled and the contrast drawn on the basis of interpretation of texts (or “reading strategies”). Theodore and Theodoret found Didymus in Alexandria too little interested in the historical situation of the prophet and the restored community in his Commentary on Zechariah.10 it may be possible in Chapter Eleven to contribute to it from the evidence adduced here from the principal commentators of the period. 242–46. and expressing gratitude for such a useful textual resource as the Hexapla. for the respective positions of Schäublin. 10 Cf. élÆyeia. he spends much more time developing levels of meaning that “it is possible” to extrapolate from the text. 8 Cf.”9 Why did the hermeneutical accent fall so diﬀerently in these commentators’ approach to the same text? It is not the place here to enter the debate as to whether the Antiochenes’ theology inﬂuenced their approach to the biblical text. ﬂstor¤a. In so far as Diodore inﬂuenced pupils in his asketerion in Antioch. C. such that one is reminded of Young’s metaphor. 7 For examples of the reading strategies found suitable for interpreting the OT’s “texts of terror” by commentators like Origen and Augustine. 122. Philosophical schools. however. see J. did not exercize the inﬂuence in Antioch they did elsewhere.7 whether meaning is to be found primarily in words or in what they denote— facts.interpreting the old testament in antioch 137 Though from an exegetical point of view we may chide Eustathius for not at some stage acknowledging Origen’s attention to textual matters. not a mirror in which the commentator may see himself and the life of his contemporaries reﬂected. more textand author-centered than reader-centered. who sees Antioch adopting an adequate historical. or vice versa. it is possible writers speaking in terms of exegesis/exegete when it is rather interpretation that they have in mind. events. . 9 Biblical Exegesis. “Das formale Verfahren der antiochenischen Schriftauslegung. While Theodoret is more prepared than Theodore to leave room for an eschatological interpretation of the text beyond its obvious sense. Thompson. it was noted in Chapter One. New Horizons in Hermeneutics. they both ﬁnd Didymus’s priorities ﬂawed. Thiselton. “Origen’s exegesis ﬁnds it apex in ‘spiritual’ meanings. Writing the Wrongs. reality. L. Greer and Simonetti in this debate. 171–72.8 not to mention a series of further layers of meaning rising upwards from the text. For them the text is primarily a window onto the events Zechariah is alluding to.
7. never to let the discernment process be seen as an overthrow of the underlying sense.’ it was not exactly ‘historical’ in the modern critical sense” (Biblical Exegesis. on his principles. and the latter for its ÍpÒyesiw.9. 21:2. to deny that Paul is employing allegory in his contrast of the earthly and the heavenly Jerusalem in Gal 4 by reference to Hagar and Sarah in Gen 16:15. yevr¤a. 168). . it proves to be the basis and foundation of the more elevated ideas. is not in opposition to the more elevated sense. The factual sense.11 Such an accent would preserve the reader and commentator from following arbitrary and gratuitous directions in the search for meaning of the kind Theodore and Theodoret found Didymus following. ﬂstor¤a.14 Consequently.138 chapter eight to observe several hermeneutical principles. in similar fashion Diodore criticized such “self-opinionated innovators who in commenting on the divine Scripture undermine and do violence to the factual sense” by substituting éllhgor¤a for a legitimate yevr¤a. 14 It remains to be seen whether Diodore was correctly representing éllhgor¤a as practiced in Alexandria. Whatever they meant by ‘literal. .12 As Eustathius had faulted Origen for shifting the focus in biblical commentary from prãgmata to ÙnÒmata. directing the “brethren” in commentary on biblical texts to focus primarily on the author and his text—the former for his skopÒw. of biblical discourse. One thing alone is to be guarded against. ﬂstor¤a provided a sound basis for that search. whether narrative or prophetic or lyrical (not that all were to be regarded as historical in the modern sense of the word).13 the former in his view eschewing any connection with factuality. 11 . and should not be undermined in a legitimate quest for other senses than the obvious— a quest conducted by the process of discernment. since this would no longer be discernment but allegory: what is arrived at in deﬁance of the content is not discernment but allegory. as himself the recipient of the tutelage of “others” (doubtless including Eustathius) and possibly also during his Athenian studies the beneﬁciary of formation by rhetoricians of the kind to which Libanius exposed those pupils. or reading strategies. despite the apostle’s use of the word in 4:24. in fact. being formulated and applied in his sparsely extant Old Testament works. 13 Diodore at this place in the preface to his Psalms Commentary has therefore. he Young disputes “the assumption that Antiochene literalism meant something like modern historicism . 166. 12 Commentarii. We have seen him. however. This focus would ensure that the accent in reading and commentary would fall on the factuality. on the contrary.
20: “There can be little doubt that the hermeneutical theories of the Antiochene school were aimed at the excesses of Alexandrian spiritualism. 8. “What is the diﬀerence between yevr¤a and éllhgor¤a?” Socrates and Sozomen. perhaps not impartially. “The Bible as read in the early church. both contrast Diodore’s attention to the “mere letter of the divine Scriptures” or “surface meaning of the divine words” with his avoidance of their yevr¤a (PG 67. 257.” 765. whether Antiochene hermeneutics is a result of theological positions or vice versa. On the other hand. Kannengiesser. Froehlich. rather than the impartial and irenic development of principles on an independent basis.” 18 Not that Origen’s motives in downplaying the literal sense of a text were above reproach.18 We shall notice this a priori hostility to hermeneutical positions of others declining as the period progresses. instead of allowing us to proceed further to a more elevated understanding. Allegory and Event. “Diodor. K. Diodore’s stance prevails in Antioch when it comes to commentating on the Old Testament. Philadelphia: Fortress.interpreting the old testament in antioch 139 says. Hanson. The primacy of the historical sense There is no questioning in Antioch in the period under discussion the conviction that Old Testament authors speak primarily about 15 From a fragment of Diodore’s work on the Octateuch. A Study of the Sources and Signiﬁcance of Origen’s Interpretation of Scripture.1516).”15 On the other hand.668. Schäublin. in our hermeneutics “we far prefer to ﬂstorikÒn to tÚ éllhgorikÒn. C. C. From this preface to Diodore’s Commentary on the Psalms. in Antioch’s view. his only extant work. P.” . who cites also a work of Diodore reported by Theodorus Lector on the topic. in Diodore’s case personal animus leads to hermeneutical obduracy. Biblical Interpretation in the Early Church. B. Initially at least. Diodore resists any tendency to draw us to Judaism and suﬀocate us by forcing us to settle for the literal sense (l°jiw) alone and attending only to it.” 17 Cf. either. 16 Commentarii. who maintains that his ﬁnding a threefold sense in Scripture “was largely a façade or a rationalization whereby he was able to read into the Bible what he wanted to ﬁnd there. in the view of R.16 The biblical text is not necessarily monovalent.17 Perhaps this observation is relevant to the question we declined to enter at this stage. may need to allow for some Antiochene interpretation in denying that in patristic hermeneutics “the Old Testament was scrutinized independently from the New.” 32. 1984. even to the extent of calling black white in reading Galatians. however. one gets the same impression of a reaction to reading (or misreading) works of another person or group with which the reader disagrees as one gets from Eustathius. cf.
To their detriment. the faithful in Antioch had rather to imagine the sentiments to be uttered by David in his own person 19 20 21 Praef. and dare to claim that Solomon the sage wrote it as a factual account of himself and the Pharaoh’s daughter. portrayed Abishag the Shunammite as the bride instead of the Pharaoh’s daughter . and “As the deer longs for the springs of water.20 It would likewise be logical for Theodore to look in the Song for ﬂstor¤a. and then thus to render the purpose of the writing clear. if to Theodoret’s later disdain: Some commentators misrepresent the Song of Songs. come up instead with some fanciful stories inferior even to babbling old wives’ tales. bedewing the whole world with the streams of his teaching to this very day”—where signiﬁcantly the compliment for teaching as distinct from heroism goes only to Chrysostom.29). perhaps Theodore. The Psalms are no exception. . “Lord my God. “Here blessed David prophesies the fortunes of the people in Babylon. (PG 81. having been encouraged by Diodore to ﬁnd it in such movingly lyrical pieces in the Psalter as those beginning. and it seems that even one Antiochene commentator. We therefore thought it necessary in beginning the commentary to take issue with this former interpretation.40). John. had adopted the same principle in the case of the Song of Songs.140 chapter eight prãgmata. believe it to be not a spiritual book. (PG 81. Praef. ﬂstor¤a. on the other hand. as we shall see in Chapter Ten. which is falsiﬁed and harmful. Others of the same ilk. Le commentaire. 35.” on which he baldly comments. which might fruitfully be sung and meditated on later by believers in the commentator’s own time.”21 It is not suﬃcient that an unnamed psalmist at an unspeciﬁed period gave voice to sentiments of hope and despair. save me.” which Theodore puts into the mouth of David on hearing of the death of Ahithophel. joy and grief. 260 (on Pss 7 and 42). love and loathing. the noble champion of piety. in you I hoped. . and that to most if not all of their books there is a factual character. . Theodoret acknowledges them as his predecessors—“Diodore. yet one cannot imagine Diodore writing “in accord with the norms of allegory” like Theodoret.19 It would be interesting for us to have a copy of Diodore’s own commentary on the Song along with Chrysostom’s.
so that perhaps only three (Pss 1. lxxxi: “Il n’en est aucun considéré comme touchant à la morale strictement individuelle. is not presented in the text of history as a person of the kind to be thought worthy of being pronounced blessed. by contrast. 194. Only occasionally is the odd verse of a psalm referring to an historical character allowed a general reference.22 “The Lord is my shepherd” (Ps 23) is a sentiment of the people returning from exile. nevertheless it is thus possible at least to ﬁnd out from his words the kind of person he was through what he suﬀered. like 33:5. 37. the people in exile or on return from exile. whether Hezekiah. however. who try to derive false comparisons drawn from history with a view to eliminating the true interpretation of the psalms . “The Lord loves mercy and judgement” (“At this point he develops his theme in more general fashion”). Diodore found such a factual basis in the great bulk of the Psalms. to these commentators. It is thus a moral psalm. an historical reference can be discerned even in psalms that seem to be of general import. Commentarii. 24 Le commentaire. Olivier. which 22 Cf. Joash.24 The tradition that Diodore had accepted from “others” that tied the bulk of the Psalms to an historical ÍpÒyesiw and prÒsvpon. the psalm being referred as a whole to Hezekiah. Jeremiah. . 49) are allowed to speak for people in general and none for the individual worshiper. . or even the Maccabees (Ps 44). even if such psalms of blessed David do not actually contain an historical account of what he suﬀered. like Ps 36: After all. Faithful to his own principles. as we have seen.23 It is on historical grounds that he establishes the exception that Diodore allowed for Ps 1 to be one of the three psalms of general applicability: No credence is to be given. 2. Theodore clearly took a leaf out of Diodore’s book. “As the deer pines for the springs of water” (Ps 42) of the people in Babylon.interpreting the old testament in antioch 141 or in the prÒsvpon of an historical character at some particular period of Israel’s history. . even amongst the few that he allows to be moral or doctrinal in content it is the Jewish people who are in focus. “The Lord is my light and my salvation” (Ps 27) of Hezekiah.” 23 Le commentaire.
27 While it would seem that he has Diodore and/or Theodore principally in focus here. L’Exégèse. where Chrysostom is not extant). ﬁnds that of the more than two score occasions . therefore.28 Theodoret at his 25 PG 55.”25 proceeding to ﬁll the listeners in on the Maccabees’ struggle with Antiochus Epiphanes before moving on to almsgiving. his other pupil John largely ignored.26 To judge not only from his treatment of the Song of Songs but also from his complete commentary on the Psalter. it was in no sense used as a history book. as J. judging from the frequency with which he rejects their approach throughout the work. Theodore. the past. like Ps 42. Theodoret would also not have lectured on history.860. 27 PG 81. 712–13. where he warns also of those commentators who “have recourse to allegory with considerable relish. is wide of the mark in claiming. proper behavior in church and other moral topics. as could have been done by choosing a psalm on which all four are extant. and have been followed by Calvin and the great majority of recent commentators. “The inspired authors (prof∞tai) are like that.” 28 Guinot.” 26 To omit Chrysostom from the proﬁle of Antiochene exegesis/interpretation.142 chapter eight Theodore in his youthful deference had also adopted. the present. 354. is to encourage unbalanced generalizations about “the failure of the larger Antiochene exegetical project” (86). however.” an article taking Ps 28 as a typical locus. “The early church fathers of the Antioch school held that the psalm was composed at the time of the Maccabean wars during the second century BC. despite his interest in psalm titles. O’Keefe does (“ ‘A letter that killeth’: towards a reassessment of Antiochene exegesis. and Theodoret on the Psalms. in fact. or Diodore. He is aware of the belief that Ps 44 is recited “in the person of the Maccabees. J. you see: they span all times.167. describing and foretelling what would happen at that time. But the class in the didaskaleion that year in Antioch were not treated to a series of history lessons when Chrysostom commented on the Psalter.” and he adds the comment. in his preface he gives salutary warning of those commentators who make the inspired composition resemble historical narratives of a certain type with the result that the commentary represents a case rather for Jews than for the household of the faith.1. And we have seen him adding considerable length to his commentary on Ps 7 by detailing the incident of David’s befriending by Hushai touched on in the title. The Psalms. Artur Weiser. O’Keefe is on ﬁrmer ground when he warns that “we should take care not to lump all the authors together” (104)—as we should take care to include all Antioch’s major ﬁgures. as would have been the case with Diodore or Theodore in charge. the future.
focuses on the verse because of its frequent citation by people using it and other texts to discharge themselves of moral accountability. Chrysostom accuses them of “mangling the limbs of Scripture” by taking out of context the single verse. “Lord. but again we can see in what is extant a pattern similar to what we found in his treatment of the Psalms. The only authentic piece of his on Jeremiah. While we should also concede that particularly in this part of the Bible “exegesis (sic) at Antioch was not monolithic. in quoting the Bible.interpreting the old testament in antioch 143 desk—as compared with Chrysostom in his classroom—is predictably readier to detect historical allusions in the Psalms.”29 its accent on the historical character of the Psalms was characteristic. and likewise not monolithic. 30 A. nor will human beings make progress or direct their own going. a single homily on 10:23. 39. 27. it is that of Diodore/Theodore he rejects twice as frequently as that of Eusebius. St Cyril of Alexandria. Interpreter of the Old Testament. was its attention to history in the works of the (Latter) Prophets. and yet the two commentators on that prophet from Antioch diﬀered in their degree of attachment to ﬂstor¤a. Kerrigan. 29 Wallace-Hadrill. 52).” He insists that. like the Rabshakeh and Jonathan’s treasonous son Mephibosheth (in Pss 25. to which he refers. In respect of the Old Testament’s lyrical material. The former context in this case is not easy to determine. though we can see his hand at work in Theodore’s writings. who gives him access to the interpretation of Origen. Theodoret having the advantage of reading Cyril. Characteristic. too. where historical elements occurred ﬁtfully and became an occasion for moral development of a topic the preacher chose to emphasize. therefore. Chrysostom has not left us a complete commentary on any prophet. showing a fascination for marginal ﬁgures. we can accept that Antiochene commentators found a (greater or lesser) degree of attention by the authors to prãgmata and ﬂstor¤a. 31. they need to take account of the historical and literary context of individual verses. either. there being conﬂicting views. Christian Antioch. notes the “really striking” aﬃnities of Cyril with the Antiochenes. people’s ways are not their own. 110.30 Diodore has left us nothing on the prophetic corpus of the Bible. Didymus’s interpretation of Zechariah katå énagvgÆn in Alexandria could never be taken as Antiochene. . when Theodoret rejects a previous opinion to reach his own on the Psalms.
including Haggai 2:8. “The silver is mine. had you not given us into his hands. and unalterable doctrines’: Chrysostom on Jeremiah. he would not have prevailed or succeeded.” thus again arriving at a justiﬁcation for irresponsible behavior in deﬁance of the text.31 While on the subject. Now. “The silver is mine.4. Hence.”32 Antioch cannot tolerate arbitrary interpretation of prophetic and other texts that have been disconnected from their historical roots. he said on God’s part. it is necessary to take issue with them as well.” Now. “Such is the devil’s malice. which begins. a great need felt. the prophet Haggai did not say that.” to which people often added. some take a contrary view to this. deﬁnitions. and the ﬁnal glory of this house will exceed the former. Since. The text should be a window. Hill. So with the aim of bringing them to ﬁrm hope and of persuading them to be conﬁdent of the outcome. so he says.159.144 chapter eight Some say it refers to Nebuchadnezzar: since the savage intended to make war on them. what he means is something like this: this way which the savage is treading in waging war against us is not of his own doing. he mentions other scriptural verses equally lightly bandied about.3. “And I shall give to whomever I wish. they lacked resources. “ ‘Norms. PG 56. “I know.158. rather. since you have decided this.” The only way to detect the distortion is to trace the verse back to its historical context. “Correct us. however. that people’s ways are not their own. no supplies evident anywhere.” 32 31 . Cf. not a warped mirror. that the punishment be inﬂicted moderately. nor will human beings make progress or direct their own going. When in fact the Jews returned from the foreign land. God commanding the army and leading it against his own city. PG 56. and claim that it does not refer to the savage but to ordinary human nature. to introduce harmful doctrines by addition or subtraction or distortion or alteration of the contents. and the gold is mine. and the gold is mine. I beg and implore. and were bent on rebuilding the Temple and restoring it to its former magniﬁcence. with enemies surrounding them. nor was he responsible for this war and victory. destroy the city and take them oﬀ into captivity. He retorts. Lord. he wanted to convince everybody that he would prevail over the city on the basis not of his might and main but of their sins. he says. but deliberately and not in anger” ( Jer 10:24).
Chrysostom therefore embarks on a further historical account from 2 Chr 26 of this king’s attempt at usurping the privileges of the high priest. once rooted in history. you say. with a loose recall (not unusual in a preacher) of an historical situation applying rather in the time of Eli in 1 Sam 3:1. But this preacher has also a further theme to develop. at any rate. with a codicil of his own added to The Chronicler’s text to contrast the Anomeans’ temerity with the seraphim’s deference. and his punishment very condign. ﬂstor¤a.90. What distinguishes the commentary (we saw in Chapter Three) are some beautiful formulations of Antiochene appreciation of the inspired Scriptures as a means of revelation and as an example of divine considerateness (sugkatãbasiw) for human limitations (ésy°neia). 33 34 Cf. he dwells on the interruption of scriptural ımil¤a as a punishment for the king’s temerity. so how was it they could not bear it? You ask me this? Ask those who pry into the ineﬀable and blessed nature. “In the year of King Uzziah’s death. This is the reason.2. the connection with historical roots has been preserved. who presume where presumption is illicit. Despite the intertextual approach to the theme.” he adds. “St John Chrysostom as biblical commentator: Six homilies on Isaiah 6. however. And yet. .” SC 277. why they turn aside their faces and use their wings as a barrier. whether this concerns oﬃce or knowledge. the temerity of the Anomeans in presuming to examine the un-examinable. unable to bear the rays streaming from that source. the vision was an example of considerateness (sugkatãbasiw).interpreting the old testament in antioch 145 A preacher like Chrysostom. only to be struck down with leprosy. “Such is the evil of not keeping to the limits of the gifts given us by God. ran the risk of developing a text. In 387 he delivered a series of homilies (the number a matter of dispute)33 on the vocation of the prophet Isaiah in the opening verses of Isa 6 beginning. and for them Uzziah would serve as an exact paradigm. Hill. in a direction perhaps not intended by the biblical author.34 And.” and proceeding to the vision of the seraphim attending on the Lord. Chrysostom reviews the divine considerateness demonstrated in the privilege accorded the seraphim and still more in the eucharistic koinvn¤a with Christian communicants—a development permissible in Antioch once the preacher has given it some basis in factuality.
he draws attention to the factual basis provided by the ﬁrst of the Twelve in Hos 1:1: This is a kind of title to the book summarizing its contents. Theodore had read the work of Didymus. As a more precise indication he cites also the fathers’ names. pneumatikÒw. Nijmegen: Dekker & van de Vegt.” It would probably have upset also his master Diodore and fellow alumnus Theodore. Tigcheler. then. 2–3. Sur Zacharie I. like ordering Isaiah to appear naked and barefoot in the midst of everyone (Isa 20:2–6). 55–64. for whom he develops a number of “spiritual” (mustikÒw. The fact that God had the prophets do a number of things that to the general run of people seemed unseemly. especially people dedicated to the contemplative life. From the outset.36 The ensuing marriage of Hosea to the “prostitute” (in the LXX) strikes Theodore like any reader as unusual. his Commentary on The Twelve (a work we are told Chrysostom also composed. Fr. but contested by J. Didymus L’Aveugle. trans. whereas at one point in Homily One he concedes that an allegorical reference to another part of Isaiah would upset them. .. H. Jotham. and he proceeds to vindicate its historicity. 35 .” Vetera Christianorum 20 (1983) 341–89. to judge from the latter’s single extant essay into commentary on the prophets. 36 Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. Étude sémantique de quelques termes exégètiques importants de son Commentaire sur Zacharie. “Lettera e allegoria nell’esegesi veterotestamentario di Didimo. but by no means beyond belief. This is the view of L. Ahaz and Hezekiah reigned. and “those not happy to accept allegories will reject our testimony. Doutreleau. That approach is anathema to Theodore. let alone merely allegorical.146 chapter eight The loose connection with prãgmata evidently satisﬁed Chrysostom’s congregation. Those meanings and that process are not what his readers should look for—rather. 1977. indicating both the prophet to whom the words belong and the time he uttered them . . and of Simonetti. nohtÒw) meanings of particular verses by a process of énagvgÆ or éllhgor¤a (the words arguably used interchangeably)35 after a brief reference to the historical situation of prophet and restored community. it is the historical context in which a prophet exercized his ministry. who treats the text of Zechariah as a mirror reﬂecting the situation of his readers. though we do not have it). Didyme l’Aveugle et l’exégèse allégorique. saying it was at the time that Uzziah. He had to mention also the time he disclosed the future according to the revelation given him from God.
Cyril takes issue with those commentators who deny any factual basis to Hosea’s marriage or declare it distasteful. instead. ed. though not abjuring Antioch’s attention to a prophet’s historical context or capitulating before Didymus’s preponderantly spiritual interpretation of prophecy. the prophet did not accept it. especially if it is at variance with the normal behavior of the one doing it. he urged Jeremiah at one time to put on his neck a wooden collar. 4–5. he says in his general preface. though the words were uttered.. and come to learn the reason and be instructed in their duty. go around naked and unshod. In Cyril he had found a commentator who avoided hermeneutical extremes. and that while God gave the instruction. In the next generation Theodoret in his work on “the book of The Twelve” will admit those limitations. 38 37 . P. is “to ﬁnd an interpretation in keeping with the reality (élÆyeia)” of the text. the latter to Eusebius of Caesarea.interpreting the old testament in antioch 147 clearly has the following explanation. the narrative’s ﬂstor¤a always defended and always the focus of comment. Since we general run of people normally listen to words idly. he bade the prophet marry a prostitute. Pusey. but are startled at the novelty of what happens and comes to our attention. and deliver his prophecy in this state. The primacy given to the historical sense of Scripture by Antioch is in those cases shown to have its limitations. Accordingly. it made sense for God with the Jews’ disobedience in mind to have the prophets frequently perform such things so that the people might in some fashion be converted by the novelty of what happened.37 And so on throughout The Twelve. and in justifying the historicity of Hosea’s marriage he not only relays the argument of Theodore and Cyril38 but seems to allude also to the contrast drawn by Eustathius between looking in the text for prãgmata and treating it as mere ÙnÒmata. Theodoret’s overall aim. and he instructed Ezekiel to lie down on his left side Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. even when an author has in fact ventured into satirical ﬁction (as in Jonah) or an apocalyptic scenario (as in Zechariah). 25:13). E. realise that God frequently gave many such instructions: he bade Isaiah take oﬀ the sackcloth from his loins. at another an iron one ( Jer 27:2. 15–17. a Florentine catena is cited by Pusey attributing the former view to Origen. Those rash enough to make this claim should. Sancti Patris Nostri Cyrilli Archiepiscopi Alexandrini in XII Prophetas 1. their fulﬁlment did not occur. I am very surprised at those who presume to claim that these words have no fulﬁlment. on the contrary.
40 PG 81. Theodoret will.39 But though he is no better equipped by his Antiochene formation to deal with apocalyptic in Joel and Zechariah. as emerges from his treatment of the whole prophetic corpus.1264. t°low). 2002. That this seemingly naïve approach has not been completely superseded is clear from its recurrence in recent works such as that of R. Moving to Ezekiel. 41 Guinot.148 chapter eight for a hundred and ﬁfty days and on his right side for forty days (Ezek 4:4–6 LXX) . B. come to take another view of a text’s élÆyeia in his Commentary on Isaiah later in his career. he claims in the preface in rebuttal of Jews who would remove the book from the prophetic corpus. From his Antiochene heritage he derives his commitment to establishing the prãgmata of the prophet’s ministry and the élÆyeia of his prophecy conﬁrmed in its outcome (¶kbasiw.41 Theodoret will still 39 On Hos 1:4 (PG 81. and with guidance from them we easily appreciate the occurrence of the events. and similarly defends the historicity of Ezek 38–39 and Zech without recourse to apocalyptic. 747. . Chisholm. and the fulﬁlment of the prophecy conﬁrms the foreknowledge: witnessing the events in our time. where he is indebted to predecessors of another vintage. which on the word of Jesus and Josephus instals Daniel as a prophet. under Cyril’s inﬂuence again. he sees no value in resisting the author’s satirical approach to Jonah. he shows the beneﬁt of being exposed to diﬀerent approaches. Handbook of the Prophets. The divine writings show him to be a prophet. As we have observed before of Theodoret’s commentary on Old Testament texts. Grand Rapids MI: Baker Academic. We saw him in Chapter Seven struggling to verify the chronology and characters in the haggadic tales of Daniel.1556).40 And he proceeds to cite historical and prophetic books as of equal value in establishing chronology. we understand those ancient prophecies. sees Theodoret in this work resisting a Jewish interpretation (perhaps of Polychronius and his brother Theodore) to align himself with that of Origen. and will look beyond the historical situation of Hosea to ﬁnd an eschatological dimension to the Lord’s marriage with his people in Hos 2:19. L’Exégèse. . even if not directly in touch with his work. endeavors to vindicate the historicity of the book’s details (including “Darius the Mede”). and to vindicate Daniel as a prophet by his foretelling future events (prospective prophecy for the Antiochenes being the only valid analogue of that charism). .
we shall stop the blasphemous mouths of the former by bringing to the fore the diãnoia (meaning) concealed in the text. .” though given a further signiﬁcance as well because associated with Adam’s fateful choice.interpreting the old testament in antioch 149 begin by relating the prophet to his historical situation and insist that even in olden times “the readers of the prophetic books found their interpretation in the outcome. Accordingly. Theodoret concedes. though conscious of such critics and more particularly the Marcionites. believing they ﬁnd the divine Scripture wanting. where the inﬂuence of Eusebius and Cyril is pronounced: “Of the prophetic composition some things are clear and have an obvious sense.” he says in the preface. in some cases for not teaching right doctrine. he allows that these must be taken as non-physical.42 That meaning is generally a factual one. criticizing the reluctance of an Antiochene predecessor (perhaps Theodore’s brother Polychronius of Apamea) to adopt a spiritual interpretation of the ruler of Tyre in Ezek 28. This impatience with a consistently historical interpretation of prophetic material is heightened in Theodoret’s Commentary on Isaiah. just as 42 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. in other cases for giving conﬂicting instructions. others by contrast search in a spirit of learning. the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in 2:9 “also were products of the soil. did not forsake their commitment to the text’s ﬂstor¤a. however. commentators in Antioch on the Octateuch. 3.” It may partly be because of the form in which the text of the ﬁnal Jeremiah Commentary comes to us that this movement towards a less historical interpretation of prophecy is not so observable there. longing to ﬁnd what is sought. Some readers inquire irreverently.” Faced with the prophet’s visions and prophetic actions. If Origen chose not to take the book of Joshua at face value lest it encourage critics of the Scriptures for its crassness. including the sense to be given to the Fall in Gen 3. “while others are spoken ﬁguratively and require explanation. and admits another level of interpretation.
baptism is called living water, not because the water of baptism has a diﬀerent nature but because through that water divine grace makes a gift of eternal life.43
It is a delicate balancing act by a commentator at the end of his career, aware of the richness of a text’s meaning, yet counseled by his betters against the arbitrariness of those interested only in spiritual meanings. The inﬂuence of Diodore, apparently his only source of alternative views in these Questions, would have been decisive.44 Theodore, of whose work on Genesis only fragments survive, had warned against such interpreters,
When they turn to expounding divine Scripture ‘spiritually’—spiritual interpretation is the name they would like their folly to be given— they claim Adam is not Adam, paradise is not paradise, the serpent is not the serpent. To these people I should say that if they distort historia, they will have no historia left.45
So Theodoret insists that “it is necessary to adhere to the facts (élÆyeia) of the divine Scripture” in replying to Q.25 on Exodus about the division of the Red Sea; yet he can also take much of the liturgical detail in the Octateuch eschatologically for the beneﬁt of Christian readers. Need for that ﬂexibility does not arise so much in interpreting the narrative in the Questions on Kingdoms and Chronicles. C. “The letter killeth” If as is clear, then, the Antiochenes gave pride of place to an historical sense of the Old Testament text in their commentary on it, does that mean it was unsophisticated and literalist commentary? Or were the commentators aware of the danger of developing funda-
43 Q.26 on Gen (Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum, 29–30). Bishop Theodoret will frequently detect a sacramental meaning in texts. 44 Cf. Guinot, L’Exégèse, 792, 794, believes that Diodore’s Questions would have been Theodoret’s only source—hence we ﬁnd in the latter “un recueil fortement marqué par l’inﬂuence du maître antiochien de l’exégèse.” Only fragments of Diodore’s work are extant. 45 In commentary on Gal 4:24 according to the ﬁfth century Latin version edited by H. B. Swete, Theodori Episcopi Mopsuesteni in epistolas B. Pauli Commentarii I, Cambridge: CUP, 1880, 74–75. Severian of Gabala had spoken in quite similar and equally polemical terms in the last of his six homilies on the Hexameron (PG 56.492.7).
interpreting the old testament in antioch
mentalist readers in the course of the biblical tradition of the faith? Wallace-Hadrill defends Antioch “against any charge of crude rigidity of mind,” claiming to ﬁnd instead “an elasticity of approach which is in some respects more sympathetic to twentieth-century minds than is the Alexandrian.” He believes that literalism is a term that
hardly ﬁts the Antiochenes. There is nothing crudely literal-minded about insisting that an ancient text should be seen primarily in its own terms, a procedure involving an eﬀort at historical understanding and presupposing what may be called a sacramental view of historical events.46
Perhaps as well as reminding him of his own caveat, that “exegesis at Antioch was not monolithic” (we recall the ﬂat-earth approach to Gen 1 by Severian),47 and that generalizations are unwise,48 we need here again to decline an invitation to enter into a full-scale comparison between Antioch and Alexandria, as also between either of these schools and modern critical approaches—a pointless exercise. As another commentator on Antiochene hermeneutics, Thiselton helps us distinguish a literalist commentator from one who is merely literal in approaching the text. For Chrysostom, he remarks,
the ‘literal’ may include the use of metaphor or other ﬁgures of speech, if this is the meaning which the purpose of the author and the linguistic context suggest.49
In those terms all the Antiochenes approach the Old Testament literally, as hopefully we all do; of them all, Theodoret perhaps works hardest to engage with the literary artiﬁce of the author, even gilding the lily at times, whereas Theodore is more often shown unwilling to take the trouble. Diodore, too, can be seen in places as perversely unwilling to recognize a ﬁgurative expression in a psalm; when in
46 Christian Antioch, 33, 32. The editors of the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, Downers Grove Ill: InterVarsity Press, 2001–, in its several volumes have appended the following “Biographical Sketch” (not to Diodore but) to Theodore: “founder of the Antiochene, or literalistic, school of exegesis.” 47 Homily 3 In Cosmogoniam (PG 56.447–56). 48 B. Nassif, “ ‘Spiritual exegesis’ in the School of Antioch,” 374, remarks that people have “overgeneralized the extent of hermeneutical unity among the Antiochenes . . . The Antiochene Fathers need separate monographs.” 49 New Horizons in Hermeneutics, 173. Cf. Asensio, “El Crisóstomo,” 334, of Chrysostom, “exegésis innegablemente literal, pero no literalista.”
reference to Jerusalem Ps 48:8 says, “God established it forever,” the psalmist would have been amused to ﬁnd the commentator correcting him for looseness of expression:
Forever does not mean for the whole of time: how could it, when the city was later besieged both by Antiochus and by the Romans? Instead, it is customary with Scripture often to call temporary things eternal.50
It was possibly Theodore who took the Song of Songs at face value as Solomon’s account of his relationship with Pharaoh’s daughter, whereas Theodoret lectured such commentators on the need to
understand that even in the Old Testament the divine Scripture says many things in a ﬁgurative manner: it uses diﬀerent names for diﬀerent realities.”
And citing Paul’s strictures in 2 Cor 3:6 (which refer rather to interpretation of the Torah), he assures lazy readers that
we do not take (the Song) in the way that we read it, nor do we rely on the letter that killeth; instead, by getting within it, we search for the Spirit’s meaning, and enlightened by him we take spiritually the Spirit’s sayings.51
A literalist, on the other hand, is content to take a statement or work at face value without attempting or managing to divine the author’s intention; Theodore of set purpose fails to acknowledge the intention of the author of the book of Jonah to satirize a brand of prophetism in Israel in the person of this reluctant, self-obsessed grouch who begrudges the Lord his willingness to forgive the repentant of any race or nation—just as today’s creationists with their own agenda are not willing to respect the intentions of the authors of the Genesis creation stories, and thus may be classed literalists or fundamentalists. Depending on the degree to which their commentaries have survived, every Antiochene will at some stage fail on the score of simplistic interpretation; even the “modéré” Theodoret fails to recognize the purpose of the haggadic tales and apocalyptic visions of Daniel, and in his zeal to reinstate the book among the Latter Prophets he believes he sees a sixth century prophet uttering prospective prophecy that is validated in later history.
Commentarii, 288. Praef. (PG 81.33,37).
interpreting the old testament in antioch
To the extent, however, that all four Antiochenes in our period simply “insisted that an ancient text should be seen primarily in its own terms” (if they could recognize what this meant in every case), their procedure was generally not literalist or fundamentalist. Diodore was doing only that in allowing for “an elevated sense” in a psalm on the proviso that the underlying sense was not prejudiced; and he could not be called uncritical in subjecting psalm titles to scrutiny as the work of later interpolators. Chrysostom comes to Genesis aware that he will ﬁnd levels of meaning in this sometimes obscure text: “There is a great treasure stored up in the Scriptures, concealed beneath the surface,” he tells his congregation in Homily 45; “so there is need of study so that we can learn the force hidden beneath the surface.”52 Yet we would class him as unsophisticated in failing to see diﬀerent hands at work in multiple creation stories in Genesis 1 and 2 and in multiple genealogies in 4 and 5. He is also at least naïve in his paraphrase of Gen 2:18, “The man gave names to all cattle,” in Sermons 3 and 6: as an exercise of his government of all things, Adam gave all the animals names, God has never changed them, “and the names given by him have remained current.” He likewise has no diﬃculty with a talking serpent, and though “in the narrator’s mind it is scarcely an embodiment of a ‘demonic’ power and certainly not of Satan,”53 Chrysostom readily makes that identiﬁcation in the course of his moral treatment of the Fall. Many of the “questions” posed on the Octateuch were predictably of a fundamentalist nature, wanting the commentator to resolve apparent discrepancies of a factual kind (hence Origen’s declining to adopt the genre). In his replies to such queries Theodoret does not always remind the reader of the priority of truth to fact in biblical discourse; when Q.20 on Exodus reads, “If all the water was changed into blood, how did the Egyptians’ enchanters do likewise with their charms?” in reference to Exod 7:22, he simply replies to them on their own terms,
The sea was near them, and only the river water had been changed into blood; so they were able to bring seawater into the palace and change it to the color of blood.54
52 53 54
PG 54.414.1. G. Von Rad, Genesis, 83. Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum, 115.
concedes that the schema of a threefold sense of Scripture developed by Origen (such as that laid out by H. 7. Diodore as master in his asketerion admitted in introducing the Psalter that he was open to a further level of meaning beyond the surface meaning: We shall treat of it historically and textually (katå tØn ﬂstor¤an ka‹ thÁ l°jin) and not stand in the way of a spiritual and more elevated sense (tØn énagvgØn ka‹ tØn yevr¤an).” in Young’s term)57 be preserved between both senses. xvi–xvii.58 To Diodore that lack of conti- Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. which should be seen as an eﬀect of divine sugkatãbasiw catering to our limitations.”55 D. of scriptural discourse. Chrysostom explains.” he had no patience with those who severed that connection. these are simply examples of the concreteness. we saw. was that continuity (“coherence. A legitimate search for other meanings The genre of question and answer was thus a stimulus to a ﬂexible commentator to recognize and convey levels of meaning in a biblical text. he will remind them that recourse to the face value of the text. U. and Theodore and Theodoret would observe in Didymus (and modern commentators on Origen have to explain). Daly in the foreword to his translation of H. De Lubac.154 chapter eight More than once. 129.” 58 Robert J. 176: “What (the Antiochenes) resisted was the type of allegory that destroyed textual coherence. tÚ gumnÚn grãmma. 57 Biblical Exegesis. von Balthasar’s Origen. is not an adequate hermeneutical principle. however. “the underlying” and “the more elevated. Spirit and Fire. as Eustathius had found in Origen. Theodoret cites Deut 24:16 and observes: “The fact that paying attention to the face value of the text is a mark of impiety God himself brings out by requiring the opposite. All the Antiochenes constantly warn readers of the Old Testament against its anthropomorphisms. paxÊthw.56 His only requirement. 115. it was not always appropriate to stay at the level of tÚ gumnÚn grãmma: one may have to move to another level to grasp fully the author’s meaning. when the questioner sees injustice in Exod 20:5 in God’s inﬂicting punishment on later generations. Histoire et 56 55 . Commentarii. or developed levels of meaning gratuitously and arbitrarily.
C.” those not happy to accept allegories will reject our testimony. In an eﬀort to distinguish objectively between three diﬀerent senses of Scripture he only succeeded in reaching a position where all distinctions were dissolved in a ‘spiritual’ sense which was in fact governed by nothing but Origen’s arbitrary fancy as to what doctrine any given text ought to contain. Ternant.” It was Diodore. on the one hand. Hanson. “La yevr¤a nella scuola esegetica di Antiochia. 60 This was the view taken of allegory by A. P. on the other Esprit.” 12: “La essenziale diﬀerenza fra teoria e allegoria consiste in ciò. Diodore declares. if. who gave the name yevr¤a to the method of ﬁnding “les réalités supérieures. as likewise éllhgor¤a parts company with ﬂstor¤a and the underlying sense of a scriptural text. che l’allegoria esclude di sua natura il senso letterale. “I shall rise up to heaven. and I shall be like the most high.” 136–38. as the opposite. Allegory and Event.” . arbitrary movement and outcome are éllhgor¤a: there is a necessary antithesis involved. et par éllhgor¤a celle de l’adversaire. the words of the king of Babylon).14. and the ongoing Antiochene reservations about recognizing allegory in the Old Testament in particular. soteriology. he has to forego any support from another Isaian text (14.60 The inﬂuence Diodore exerts in this manifesto and his further axiom. 257.” is shown by the adoption by the Antiochenes (and later commentators) of the two terms yevr¤a and éllhgor¤a as representing the respective positions of Antioch and Alexandria. R. that was also the view of allegory deﬁned by the rhetors. and so he settles for Paul’s plain statement to Timothy (1 Tim 3:6): If. as we shall see later. The scheme is laid out at no one place in Origen’s works. “La yevr¤a d’Antioche dans le cadre de sens de l’Ecriture. When in his third homily on Isaiah 6 Chrysostom wants to document the devil’s arrogance. Vaccari.” 59 This judgement by Diodore aﬀected Antiochene thinking not only on Scripture but also on Christology.interpreting the old testament in antioch 155 nuity was to be found in allegory. morality and spirituality. Ternant claims. and was anathema. where continuity is in fact preserved. we cite Isaiah as witness in his words about him. which he ﬁnds “ultimately self-frustrating.” In the view of P. “We far prefer tÚ ﬂstorikÒn to tÚ éllhgorikÒn. knowing his congregation would resist any such allegorical application of the text. unlike Diodore’s in his Psalms Commentary. 139–43) is open to criticism on the score of arbitrariness and irrelevance. and unfairly applied by Antioch to Alexandria’s use of it—though De Lubac is wrong to claim it was never used there in that fashion. Both the manner of moving with continuity to a further level of meaning and its outcome can be styled yevr¤a.59 hence in his view Paul was astray in using the term of his legitimate movement from Hagar and Sarah to the earthly and the heavenly Jerusalem in Gal 4. is even more trenchant in his criticism of Origen’s method. “Par yevr¤a Antioche entendait signiﬁer sa propre position.
and exposure to predecessors of another school. 643–44. Theodoret in adopting a spiritual approach to the Song of Songs as his ﬁrst exegetical work claims familiarity with “the norms of allegory”63 in rehearsing Ezekiel 16 & 17 and. and again 61 SC 277. no one will have any further objections. Even Diodore would commend the brevity of the excursus. What is the grain? The virtuous. Guinot. he proceeds in commentary on Ezekiel to engage again with the allegorical presentations of Jerusalem in chs 16 & 17 and also the prophet’s use of “the genre of allegory”64 in ch 23 to present Samaria and Jerusalem as the daughters Oholah and Oholibah.1040). then is the axe? Retribution and punishment. With the lapse of time. as we have seen. the support cited from the New Testament. (PG 81.62 In fact. he is loath (we shall see) to recognize a further level of meaning.122. 9). 279). and the continuity of thought. On this psalm he even adverts brieﬂy to the two daughters Oholah and Oholibah in the allegory of Samaria and Jerusalem in Ezek 23. After infringing that latter principle himself in his next work in his fruitless attempt to vindicate the historical character and prophetic credentials of Daniel. however. 62 The exception is Ps 45. And what are the trees? People. Theodore rebuts the interpretation: “He also mentions a queen (v.156 chapter eight hand. . by king referring to Christ. sees Theodoret accessing the interpretation of the Song by Origen through the work of Eusebius (while not being certain that Eusbius himself composed a commentary). 31. Though in commentary on The Twelve he joins Theodore and Cyril in protesting against those who chose to see Hosea’s marriage not as one more prophetic action but as allegorical. without using the term.98). 64 On Ezek 23:18 (PG 81. What is the winnowing fan? Judgement. Chrysostom makes one other brief essay into allegory. 63 Praef. Chrysostom proceeds: “What. where John the Baptist’s words (Luke 3:9) about the axe being laid to the root are cited. Likewise in this verse sword and bow and arrows are punishment and retribution” (PG 55. 69. What is the straw? The unworthy. warns about the deadly eﬀect of adherence to the letter. L’Exégèse. focusing strictly on the ﬂstor¤a of the Psalms and The Twelve. which Jewish commentators wanted to refer to Solomon. he will diﬀer from the former in allowing an allegorical interpretation—with New Testament support—to verses like Hab 3:17 and Zech 4:14.3. and by queen to the Church composed of the faithful” (Le commentaire. we call Paul to prosecute him. like Pss 22. including texts applied by the New Testament to Jesus or the Church.40). Joel 2 and Amos 9. in comment on Ps 7:12.61 Theodore predictably will make no attempt to recognize any use of allegory in the two works he comments on (with one explicable exception).
205. In coming to the Octateuch. He wrote this.” as Diodore required. the women to the two covenants. in similar fashion Moses is to be understood as the Law. Now. So just as when Moses died in actual fact. . so when he opens comment on that book. so his readers can rest assured. he adverts to Paul’s allegorical use of Hagar and Sarah in Gal 4. Theodoret may have been aware that commentators of another school took much of the material allegorically. He next withdrew his hand.interpreting the old testament in antioch 157 under Cyril’s inﬂuence he is even more amenable to such an interpretation in later work on Isaiah. The crimson thread was a pointer to the sacriﬁces of old. Isaac and Jacob. Matt 1:3) and the crimson thread that established priority for the former: This is the reason that Zerah thrust his hand out ﬁrst. and Joshua as the savior of the same name. a veil lies over their heart” (2 Cor 3:15). Noah. but to compare the type to the reality—Abraham to God. Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum.66 Treatment of Kingdoms and Chronicles does not require application of this hermeneutic. Here too. as Origen did on Joshua. 268. New Testament citation conﬁrms. Joshua led the people into the promised land. Melchizedek. not to exclude the factual basis ( ﬂstor¤a). probably aware that Diodore had been uneasy about the apostle’s adoption of such a hermeneutic. the fact that the Law goes under the name of Moses we have already demonstrated by citing the testimonies of the divine Scripture: “They have Moses and the prophets” (Luke 16:29) and “To this day when Moses is read out. and Perez came out.65 That the continuity has been preserved in “the more elevated sense. pointing to the way of life before the Law. Though Diodore had allowed in principle for a further level of meaning in Old Testament texts beyond the factual under certain conditions. so after the end of the Law our Joshua came and opened the kingdom of heaven to the devout people. Abraham. The same principle applies to interpretation of the Gen 38 story of Tamar’s twins Zerah and Perez (cf. the sons to the peoples. the Law being midway between those before the Law and those after the Law. therefore. his general avoidance of it was taken by Theodore to mean that “spiritual” interpretations were suspect (we saw above in 65 66 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. and the commentator does not invoke it. those men appeased God with sacriﬁces—Abel. Enoch.
in reference to the New Testament’s citing texts. “Do I not ﬁll heaven and earth? says the Lord. without doing violence to the historical meaning (tØn ﬂstor¤an)—perish the thought—but along with it adding this as well for the beneﬁt of the scholars to the extent appropriate. To show how a verse like Ps 115:16 must thus be understood.70 Approaches to the Psalms that were either too allegorical or too historical were rejected in favor of a “moderate historicism”71 that allowed also for another level of interpretation. and were not to have regard to the fuller sense (yevr¤a) contained therein.” he uses the same phrase in giving a spiritual meaning to the ruler of Tyre and to Pharaoh in Ezekiel 28 & 31. 39. 70 On Ezek 31:10 (PG 81. but the earth he has given to human beings? He is employing language out of considerateness (sugkatãbasiw). on the other hand. 68 PG 55. the literal referent 67 Theodore will also employ the term (in connection with the term l∞mma for the prophetic oracle uttered in a state of ecstasy) of the contemplation possible to an ecstatic Nahum (Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. Theodoret’s willingness to move to another level of meaning does not need documenting any further. you have the desire to take the psalm also in an anagogical sense (katå énagvgÆn). is adequate for the literal sense (katå tÚn =htÒn).313. he tells his congregation: What has been said. then. 69 PG 55. which in fact must be applied to make sense of the Bible’s use of ﬁgurative language. simply accepted the licence allowed in Diodore’s principle. even the term yevr¤a is found rarely in his mouth. As he adopted a completely spiritual interpretation of the Song of Songs in accordance with “the norms of allegory. . That further level could often be classed generally as eschatological. 239). he cites a similarly anthropomorphic statement in Jer 23:24. accepting the licence while respecting Antioch’s hermeneutical priorities and safeguards.69 And he proceeds to re-interpret all the verses.1124).” It would have the opposite meaning to this if we were to take the words at face value (katå tØn prÒxeiron) superﬁcially. Christian Antioch. If.158 chapter eight his comment on Gal 4:24).67 Chrysostom.3. however.68 After commenting on all the verses of the psalm numbered 147 in the LXX (Heb. 147:12–20). So what does he mean by The heaven is the Lord’s heaven. we shall not decline to travel that path as well. 71 Wallace-Hadrill.6.483.
72 That ﬁnal axiom was not derived from Diodore.” 73 72 .” The basic question to put to Old Testament authors and composition was.interpreting the old testament in antioch 159 pointing ahead to a later one—in Theodoret’s case to the person of Jesus. Let lights be made in the ﬁrmament of heaven. By the word of the Lord the heavens were established. Schäublin. who long ago—in fact. Untersuchungen. remember. 45. the truth. Old Testament inspired composition anticipates the Gospel teaching. as Chrysostom was at pains to insist above that giving an anagogical sense to LXX Ps 147 should not “do violence to the ﬂstor¤an—perish the thought. élÆyeia?73 E. some other New Testament person or event.1096. as I said before. or an eternal realization such as the heavenly Jerusalem. On Ps 33:6. and by the breath of his mouth all their power. Cf. 170: “Der Bezug auf die ‘Realität’. on the other hand. 110).14–15). Theodore gives David pride of place as a prophet of “what would shortly happen. that would represent a reversal of Antiochene priorities. 8. and so it was (Gen 1:6–7. who had acknowledged a direct messianic reference in only four psalms (Pss 2. whether in the Latter Prophets or in a composer like David. Where lies the truth? The question applies in particular to prophetic material (always prospective for Antioch). and so it was.” First place among them. True theology. So the face value of the text conveys the surface meaning of this. These men would probably deny that the “true theology” of the Old Testament emerges only from looking ahead to the New Testament. stellt aber die wohl entscheidende Komponente der antiochenischen ‘historischen’ Auslegung dar. Theodoret comments. Where lies the text’s true reality. the Church. was held by blessed David. very long ago—and well before the outcome of the events mentioned all that would happen in regard to the people PG 80. Eﬀort and time on the part of workers were not required: a word was suﬃcient for creating on his part. as would Theodore. for instance. it was appropriate for the Jews of old. gives a glimpse of God the Word with the all-holy Spirit making the heavens and the heavenly powers. In introducing Joel. he said. Let a ﬁrmament be made. die élÆyeia.
God’s providential activity with respect to the world. the perspective need not be extended indeﬁnitely. That was not to deny that the Lord was responsible for an oﬁkonom¤a in which the Incarnation of Jesus represented the high point.160 chapter eight at diﬀerent times. 79. Schäublin. thus proving the truth. the material world. the ‘ﬂesh’ of Christ in the story of his birth. by saying what would shortly happen. of course). meant that spiritualising away the body. in which context all Old and New Testament realities gained full signiﬁcance. Young. The symbolic allegory of Origen seemed to undermine the core by encouraging such spiritualising. 75 74 . ohne den Texten Gewalt antun und ohne dem Grundsatz. life or passion. he conveyed to human beings through other means as well the coming Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. ¶kbasiw.” In practice not all Antiochenes would see the need to present the “overarching narrative” as extending quite so far. to disclose the truth of the prophecy. of what was foretold. whereas Theodoret (under Alexandrian inﬂuence) would at times take it further. zuwiderhandeln zu müssen” (166–67). who later mentioned what had long before been said by him. 159.76 Theodore sketched just such a scenario in introducing Jonah in the hope of bringing some sense to the “novel and extraordinary things” of that unusual book (imperfectly understood by the commentator. t°low) of Old Testament prophecies. or indeed in the eucharist. Theodore. the avenging angel of 701 that annihilated Sennacherib’s forces or the Maccabees in battle against Antiochus gave closure to prophecies of future hostilities and ultimate victory. to look within the Old Testament for fulﬁlment (¶kbasiw. The perspective was not extended into the dim and distant future of the New Testament. and a little before the actual outcome of the events. let alone the eschaton. had to be deemed heretical. the purpose being both to remind everyone of what had been prophesied and. Biblical Exegesis. 296–97: “What we do have (in the Antiochenes) is an important stress on the ‘reality’ of the overarching narrative from creation through fall to incarnation and redemption. The ‘reality’ of the oikonomia.74 The events foretold. The same thing was done also by the other prophets. even before Jesus a ﬁgure like Zerubbabel was a likely candidate. and even before the Roman conquest of Judea or a distant Armageddon. Unersuchungen. élÆyeia. 76 Cf. For the purpose of making it clear and to prevent it being thought he had at a later stage made plans and decisions in our regard. had been instructed by the aphorisms of Aristarchus to “clarify Homer from Homer”75—in other words. “Der realen Geschichte Israels in christlicher Sicht ihre Bedeutung zu verleihen. Cf. prãgmata. we noted. das Alte Testament aus dem Alten Testament zu erklären. would “shortly” have their outcome.
displaying in his own person a type of such a great reality. we discover that at no point is Jonah described as a typos of Christ. The Psalms likewise in his view. .interpreting the old testament in antioch 161 of Christ the Lord so that all Jews might look forward to it from a distance . Yet. . developed in the interests of preserving ﬂstor¤a. too. We have noted that Theodore is not prepared to see a legitimate Christological yevr¤a in verses of Pss 22. It is obvious from the facts that he chose to employ blessed Jonah and do novel and extraordinary things.” as “from the tribe of Judah. . if we move from the statement of the theory to see how and where it is applied in his Commentary. and oﬀered me vinegar to drink. 69. have such a foreshortened perspective. seems to have missed this passage in claiming.” Theodore properly warns against seeing reference to such details of the cruciﬁxion as anything more than accommodation: “It is not as though the psalm were referring to these things . could with proﬁt have been heeded by those too 77 Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. despite liturgical usage.” which Theodore takes to be a index of royal status. “governor (of Judah). .77 But it is a rare concession by a commentator embarrassed by his unattractive protagonist in the book and its incredible contents.” 78 The LXX misreads an unfamiliar term of Akkadian origins in the Heb. especially with New Testament support as in this case. 455. 169. he had stated his intention on the ﬁrst of the Psalms. which has no holds no terrors for his Antiochene peers. “Theodore has a clear idea of the typological interpretation of the Old Testament. and so for this reason he was led on by such incredible novelty and proved worthy of belief.”79 While this interpretation. 69. found at other places in the work as well. with those few exceptions.” Despite the fact that in all four evangelists there is an implicit citation of Ps 69:21. “They gave me bile for food. Such an overview. the use of the citations was inevitable. 173. Generally throughout his comment on other members of the Twelve Zerubbabel is found (by a misreading of Haggai)78 to be a worthy royal successor to David capable of closing the perspective within which the events prophesied will be fulﬁlled. gives the lie to the judgement on reasons for its unique survival in Greek oﬀered by Sullivan and others. is also only infrequently invoked by Theodore. that “we should maintain a sequence of explanation in faithful accord with history. typology. too. 79 Le commentaire. Biblical Interpretation. for the reason that he intended to present him as a type of the life of Christ the Lord. 31.” Simonetti. pa˙ath. text of 1:1. that it contained “nothing of Christological import. .
fulﬁlled the promise made to David: “the Word became ﬂesh and dwelt among us” ( John 1:14). believing that it applied to him as descending from David. Theodoret is—for him—scathing in his criticism of fellow commentators (the Ioudaiophrôn in focus but unnamed) for disputing that the description of Jerusalem in Micah 4:2 as the source of the saving word’s dissemination throughout the world refers to apostolic evangelization. that Zerubbabel’s government lasted for a short time before being cut short by death. 82 Cf.83 On Ps 69.1409). and in particular Jesus must supersede Zerubbabel. on the contrary.162 chapter eight willing to forsake it for “spiritual” meanings. “Sartor resartus: Theodore under review by Theodoret. Hill. that even some of the teachers of religion insert this interpretation in their writings. Theodoret is not prepared to accept Theodore’s foreshortening of the hermeneutical perspective. on the other hand. however. descended as he was from David according to the ﬂesh. Jews. “La cristallisation d’un diﬀérend: Zorobabel dans l’exégèse de Théodore de Mopsueste et de Théodoret de Cyr. Having been exposed to other options from the outset of his exegetical career.” 83 PG 81. assuming the tent from David. Guinot. it seems to me intolerable and unpardonable. PG 81. Cf.82 Other Christian institutions must also come into focus. claim it is a prophecy of the return from Babylon. far from wanting to understand it in this way. Theodore needed to learn from Theodoret that texts can have “two levels of meanings. He says as much when he meets it in the latter on the eventual successor to David in Amos 9:11–12.25 (PG 80. the timeline of its ¶kbasiw must be extended not only into the New Testament but beyond.1760–61.1705. the error about this prophecy being all of a piece with their other follies.” 81 80 . Our Lord Jesus Christ. none of which we ﬁnd happening in the achievements of Zerubbabel. whereas the prophecy contains word of eternal good things and the acknowledgement of God by all the nations.”80 as the latter demonstrated in frequently ﬁnding a sacramental dimension in Old Testament texts. on the other hand. They refused to acknowledge. While there is nothing surprising in their being so stupid as to take it this way.81 It is a direct rebuttal of the application of Aristarchus to the Old Testament. Some commentators understood this of Zerubbabel.
moment in the Isaiah commentary. skiã.interpreting the old testament in antioch 163 Theodoret was conﬁrmed in this placement of the élÆyeia of the Old Testament beyond its own conﬁnes when he came under the inﬂuence of Cyril in composing his Commentaries on The Twelve and Isaiah. As a model to explain this he takes an artist. . At an appropriate. The prophecy (in ch. then ﬁlling in the outline with colors. and they sketch a likeness of it. the anagogical meaning of a text. and yet he indicates in advance also the original of the picture. This distinction the divine Paul also drew. in reverse order. ﬁrstly doing an outline. and he says that in reading a biblical—or at least prophetic—text on this model we encounter. it was not the way 84 SC 315. 60) contains three themes at the one time: (Isaiah) prophesies as though in outline the rebuilding of Jerusalem that happened under Cyrus and Darius. tÊpow)—terms he would have found in Cyril. To prove his point he then cites Hebrew 10:1. if late. as though in a picture drawn in stronger colors he also presents the more precise imprint of the reality. Theodore and even Chrysostom would hardly endorse this reversal of Antioch’s hermeneutical priorities. the ecclesial meaning. the splendor of holy Church. eﬁk≈n. and then coloring it in (eﬁk≈n. where the author also speaks of those three levels of meaning. less so in its ecclesial meaning.84 Theodoret will repeat this three-fold hermeneutical model in commenting on Leviticus on his Quaestiones.238–40. which in the present life resembles as far as possible the future realities. Diodore. that ageless existence bereft of care. and ﬁnally the anagogical meaning—the élÆyeia. have the original. and least of all in its historical meaning. The artists. Theodoret lays out his hermeneutical principles for prophetic material in particular. the future life and the way of living in heaven. He states that he is interested particularly in the reality. ﬁrst doing a rough sketch (skiã). “For the Law contains a shadow of future realities and not the picture of the realities:” by “future realities” he refers to that immortal life free from grief.1. with original in mind. élÆyeia. and by “shadow” he refers to the Law’s teaching this more obscurely than the Church. the historical meaning. prãgmata. prãgmata. namely. by “picture of the realities” he refers to the way of life in the Church. the kernel of Third Isaiah’s message beginning at ch 60. you see.
” . An alternative (and premature?) judgement was oﬀered by Hatch. L. not bred in the bone nor his last word on the subject. even if of longstanding elsewhere. “Cyril of Alexandria as interpreter of the Old Testament. like Theodore.86 In his movement from situating Old Testament books. Antiochene hermeneutics of the Old Testament has been dismissed on the grounds that “a strictly historical interpretation of the Old Testament is anachronistic.”87 Such views retain something of the adversarial character of positions reached on this question of interpretation in those early centuries. “ ‘A letter that killeth.” 21. on the other hand.85 Their interpretation of it was not that attributed—inadequately—to Cyril: Cyril knew no way to speak of Christ than in the words of the Bible. 82: “It has been one of the many results of the controversies into which the metaphysical tendencies of the Greeks led the churches of the fourth and ﬁfth centuries.” 86 R.” One has to wonder. “ ‘A letter that killeth. Greer.164 chapter eight to ﬁnd the truth of the Old Testament that was taught in the asketerion in their time. “In the end. . says it “cut across opinions almost universally held in the ancient church. 182. O’Keefe. Wilken. as we noted in statements of Eustathius. to postpone almost to modern times the acceptance of ‘the literal grammatical and historical sense’ as the true sense of Scripture. Only by relating what is written in the Scriptures to Christ who is the ‘truth’ can the interpreter discover what is ‘true’ in the text.” 21. That it was somewhat exotic. and no way to interpret the words of the Bible than through Christ . The Inﬂuence of Greek Ideas on Christianity.” and has even been misrepresented as “killing the word of God and robbing it of saving power. . (sympathetically) relaying the thought of Leontius of Byzantium. “Cyril of Alexandria. For 85 Of the foreshortened hermeneutical perspective favored by Theodore. Theodoret was accepting a notion of biblical truth which to that point had not been current in Antioch. O’Keefe. Antiochene exegesis failed precisely because it did not appreciate how central a Christ-centered ﬁgural reading of the Old Testament was to its appropriation by the Christian church. Early Biblical Interpretation. both vintage Antioch compositions. whether such views take account of Cyril’s strong emphasis on ﬂstor¤a before proceeding to ecclesiological and Christological levels of interpreting OT texts.’” 104. makes the claim. 87 Wilken. using terminology of Hans Frei and Eric Auerbach.’ ” 96. Diodore and Theodore in particular. is shown by his subsequent Jeremiah Commentary (in the form we have it) and the Questions. to ﬁnding reference to Jesus in individual verses in the manner of Cyril. events and characters within a broadly Christological oﬁkonom¤a. 16.
” 580. if not always the dominating factor. Bardy. not a mirror.” For Antioch the text’s factuality. For the moment it could be conceded that interpreters of that ancient text of all schools were principally—and commendably—interested in arriving at its “truth. . Roma: Pontiﬁcio Istituto Biblico. concurs: “Des purs alexandrins comme saint Cyrille s’eﬀorcaient de donner une grande place à l’interprétation historique. 88 One notes a similar shift in position in the case of Alexandrian interpreters. Alexander Kerrigan. 1952. whether arising from or giving rise to them. In Chapter Ten we shall consider whether this relative ﬂexibility in commentators on the Old Testament ensured that Antiochene readers/listeners were thus adequately prepared to share in its “saving power. a question yet to be investigated in this volume. 110.88 and allowance was explicitly made for discernment of other levels. did not lead to a discovery of the full meaning. “Interprétation chez les pères. as for instance by comparing Cyril’s Commentry on Zechariah with his predecessor Didymus’s. the text was primarily a window for them.interpreting the old testament in antioch 165 hermeneuts in those times an approach to the Old Testament was associated with theological convictions. tÚ gumnÚn grãmma. as Kerrigan also suggests). St Cyril of Alexandria. provided these were not arrived at arbitrarily—hardly an “anachronistic” judgement. It came to be acknowledged that attention to the bare text. was basic to that search. Interpreter of the Old Testament. ﬂstor¤a.” Cyril’s modern commentator. thinks Cyril may have read Antiochene works (including Theodore’s) in the period before the accession of Nestorius to the see of Constantinople (he could hardly have read Theodoret’s exegetical works by then. Analecta Biblica 2.” It is time now to take note of individual theological accents discernible in the works of these commentators.
4 Yet all the Antiochene commentators were public ﬁgures and pastors. to opt instead for a date around 428 and certainly before the Symbol of Union. Richard. variously in respect of the council of Ephesus in 431 and the Symbol of Union in 433. Young proceeds.”1 In their Old Testament commentaries none of the principal ﬁgures of the school of Antioch admit to any current controversies.264–65). he prefers to assign the work to a date after Ephesus. all caught up to some extent in theological and ecclesiastical turmoil. internal evidence has led commentators to place Theodoret’s Commentary on the Song of Songs. 60. Biblical Exegesis. Diodore. “Notes sur l’evolution doctrinale de Théodoret de Cyr. “make it absolutely clear that the Arian controversy was about exegesis.” though “of course. either.CHAPTER NINE THEOLOGICAL ACCENTS IN OLD TESTAMENT COMMENTARY The question has yet to be addressed as to whether hermeneutics in Antioch and its biblical commentary in general in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries took their distinctive character under the inﬂuence of theological positions and concerns of the age. from Mani and Marcion to Arius. and some the explicit object of ﬁerce polemic.” 490: “Chrysostom was the one leading Antiochene scholar of that time to remain free of any suspicion of heretical taint. takes account of the reasoning behind the decision of M. But in L’Exégèse. “La Christologie de Théodoret de Cyr dans son Commentaire sur le Cantique. “The writings of Athanasius. for instance. though Chrysostom (the least controversial in matters of doctrine)2 occasionally takes indiscriminate aim at a rogues gallery drawn from a couple of centuries. even labeled heretics.” for instance. for instance. 4 Guinot. champion of the faith against Julian and Valens. who places the work after the Symbol of Union. Athanasius cannot admit to a genuine controversy about exegesis. 1 Young. while admirable.” 2 Cf.3 Their reticence on theological and ecclesiastical developments. “Theodore of Mopsuestia as representative of the Antiochene school. the opening to his commentary on the messianic Ps 110 (PG 55.” 272. or vice versa. can make it diﬃcult to date their works. Wiles. “For in his eyes any opponent is ‘double-minded’ and has betrayed the unity of the truth. 30–31.” 268.” 3 Cf. .
7 Cf. Theodore and Theodoret are much less obsessed with a range of heretics than is the monk Didymus in his cell in Alexandria. DS 425–26. Ephesus and Chalcedon. 324. Church councils of Constantinople. while being careful not to Cod. In commenting on Zechariah.” 9 Cf. Theodore died as bishop of Mopsuestia in 428 as Nestorius succeeded to the see of Constantinople. held in this period. Valentinians. for instance. 397. Kelly. Ebionites.7 Even today Theodoret is referred to by some eastern communities as a crypto-Nestorian. 8 The term is used of Theodoret in the 1990 Agreed Statement of the Orthodox Church and the Oriental Orthodox Churches meeting at Chambesy. Apollinarists. who frequently locks horns with Arians.168 chapter nine was awarded for his role at the council of 381 and in the development of its creed an accolade for his orthodoxy by the emperor Theodosius in conﬁrming the council decrees. It is only under the inﬂuence of Alexandrian predecessors that Theodoret in his Isaiah Commentary turns to inveighing against Arians and Eunomians a dozen times. Manichees. While Chalcedon at the end of our period may have been referred to as “the triumph of Antiochene Christology.8 though happily the ﬂames of prejudice did not destroy his works. Docetists. 6 5 .1149). then. Quasten. 341. “Théodoret”. 433–37. and for his complicity in the latter’s education his works were condemned by the ﬁfth ecumenical council. Geneva. It is only in common defense of divine transcendence that all these commentators urge their readers/listeners to recognize anthropomorphisms as a gesture of divine considerateness. By Cyril of Alexandria in his Contra Diodorum et Theodorum 17 (PG 76. we ﬁnd it to be to the credit of these pastors that they do not use their commentaries to develop polemical theological theses. Sabellians. Leaving aside the question of the relationship between the Antiochene approach to the Old Testament and any underlying theology.5 yet he came to be labeled father of Nestorianism6 and condemned at a synod of Constantinople in 499.3. xvi 1. Patrology 3. Theodos. is to be preferred: “En réalité. Théodoret n’a pas été nestorien. Bardy’s view. Early Christian Doctrines. sugkatãbasiw. Macedonians.”9 earlier synods were held under the inﬂuence of parties unsympathetic to Antioch’s theology. issued dogmatic creeds and formulas that we ﬁnd leaving an imprint on the commentaries without being explicitly cited and without necessarily being in every case to Antioch’s complete satisfaction. cited by J.
But the open text is a discipline 10 PG 54.” 492.” perhaps his most powerful passage in the Psalms homilies is his heavy satire of the funerary excesses of the rich in comment on Ps 49:11. but since it is a particular token of his unspeakable love that for the sake of our instruction he should permit the concreteness (paxÊthw) of such words. on the other hand. accordingly he employs such human expressions. most of which have perished. Chrysostom can move from the text of Genesis and the Psalms to discourse on such moral themes as the evils of secular amusements.” the theological aberration was probably not the motive for those six homilies In Oziam.11 In his pulpit. Theodore and Theodoret in their desk commentaries abandoning the Old Testament text for lengthy digressions on these topics. we do not ﬁnd Diodore.521. such as the theatre and the races. of course. with his congregation before him. A. “Theodore of Mopsuestia. 11 In case the more pedestrian style of commentary by these Antiochenes should lead readers to think them less profoundly theological.theological accents in old testament commentary 169 misinterpret them. reminds us that “Antiochene exegesis was no less theological (except in the very technical and somewhat misleading use of that word in which it is sometimes employed as a synonym for mystical) than its Alexandrian counterpart. Maurice Wiles. We noted the contrast between a lack of sustained theological polemic in Chrysostom’s commentary on Gen and the bitter attacks on Arians in particular by his contemporary in Constantinople Severian of Gabala.10 And though we saw him taking occasion of the contrast between the reverence of the seraphim in Isa 6 and the temerity of King Uzziah in 2 Chr 26 to fulminate against Anomean presumption in “examining the unexaminable. then.” he instinctively feels the need to remind his congregation (not for the ﬁrst time). and the need for almsgiving and (in relation to Ps 4) “the art of prayer. “God left him. since it would not otherwise be possible for human hearing to cope with the sublimity of the message had he spoken to us in a manner worthy of the Lord. Trinitarian accents Although these Antiochene pastors wrote formal dogmatic works on the Trinity and the Incarnation and various moral treatises. Ascending and descending. When Chrysostom in Homily 60 on Genesis comes to comment on 35:13. ascending at the spot where he had been talking with him.1.” . are not properly applied to God.
since God is commonly called father for his care when people are shown attention from that source. unless one were to suspect that with inspired vision he is hinting at the Father and the Son. Theodore is vigorously opposed to our presuming in the Old Testament authors New Testament ideas. or God the Son to be son of God the Father. characterized by extreme error and stupidity. and creation (to put it in a nutshell) as what was brought by him from non-being to being. conciliar decree or simply popular misunderstanding. It is that text that at times elicits from commentator and preacher some incidental elucidation of a theological nicety that is perhaps the subject of current debate. . identifying God as eternal in being and as cause of everything.13 12 13 Commentarii. and make my petition to my God Scripture is in the habit of using. he asserts in commentary on the vision of horses of various colors in Zechariah 1. Diodore and Theodore are concerned that Christians should not read their own theological distinctions—for example. 168–69.170 chapter nine that brings even the ardent preacher back to the biblical author’s theme. as I said before. dismissing the views of Hippolytus. the people before the coming of Christ the Lord in their religious knowledge were aware only of God and creation. 325. Now. Eusebius and Jerome that the rider of the red horse is Christ. Lord. and not innocent of impiety. of the persons of the Trinity—into Old Testament expressions. and they are called sons in having something more on the basis of relationship with God. they had no notion of trinitarian distinctions. It is. The former comments on Ps 30:8. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. yet absolutely no one of those living at that time understood God the Father to be father of God the Son. Apollinaris. is to the eﬀect that he saw the Son of God here. This expression I shall cry to you.12 As in his hermeneutics. being what the Father is in also being from him. that God the Son was the son of God the Father. in fact. obvious that none of those who lived before the coming of Christ the Lord knew of Father and Son. While terminology for father and son is to be found in the Old Testament. nor in fact is he speaking of the Lord and God as diﬀerent. such an expression is not an interchange of persons. the statement of certain commentators. none knew that God the Father was the father of God the Son. You see.
being both God and from God. Theodoret in his time. does not resonate with Theodore’s insistence on this matter. being unable even to list separate kinds among the ministering beings or to associate with God what could be described as a distinct person (prÒsvpon). care and aﬀection. he sees the author giving us an insight into both Trinity and Incarnation. The divine Scripture taught this to its readers at that time without having an insight into anything in invisible creation consisting of separate kinds. since everyone before the coming of Christ the Lord knew of God and creation but nothing further. When the Lord says in Joel 2:28. a distinct person of a Son. 14 15 Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius.15 And he proceeds to cite the need of Jesus to inform the disciples of this doctrine through the trinitarian formula in Matt 28:19. which according to its teaching carried out the divine decisions. in fact. . and a distinct person of a Holy Spirit. 310–311.” Theodore hastens to comment. referring to all the invisible and ministering beings in general as angels and powers.14 He is equally insistent in similar terms at another occurrence of “My spirit” in Hag 2:5: The people of the Old Testament were unaware of a distinct hypostasis of a Holy Spirit identiﬁed as a person (prÒsvpon) in its own right in God. believing each of them to be of a divine and eternal substance (oÈs¤a). In Gen 1:26. since they understood nothing of this sort. from which we learn of a distinct person (prÒsvpon) of a Father. Consequently. 95. something communicated to later Christians (he says) by religious instruction and the baptismal liturgy. and with his more ﬂexible notion of the boundaries between Old Testament revelation and New. by ‘holy spirit’ and every other such name at the time they referred to his grace. “I shall pour out my spirit on all ﬂesh. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius.theological accents in old testament commentary 171 We ﬁnd in Theodore a similar resistance to recognising in the Old Testament any reference to the Holy Spirit. they were not in a position to know of a Holy Spirit as a distinct hypostasis in God. The people in the time of the Old Testament did not understand the Holy Spirit to be a unit as a person (monadikÚn §n Ípostãsei) distinct from the others.
Likewise. of Father and Holy Spirit in another.7 reads. . and discerns in advance the enﬂeshment and Incarnation of the Only-begotten. by saying “our” he indicated the number of the hypostases: the God of all foresees what is not yet made as already made. and that it must have been composed in the wake of Chalcedon.” On the other hand.17 B. the Spirit’s part.” we are told by Speiser. of Son and Father in one case.18 Admittedly. and by proceeding to say. cv–cvi.66–68. . Marie-Josèphe Rondeau remarking on the “eﬀacement du Christ locuteur chez Diodore. by saying “image” in the singular. he indicated the divine nature held in common.172 chapter nine By saying.” he made clear the number of persons. he brought out the identity of nature: he did not say. 17 SC 315. Christological accents In the case of Diodore’s Commentary on the Psalms. those like Mariès and Olivier who upheld the attribution of the work to Diodore had to deal with the objection that this “father of Nestorianism” could hardly be responsible for a work betraying such an orthodox Christology. “And now the Lord has sent me and his Spirit. a messianic character to psalms is rarely conceded.” to point out (under the inﬂuence of Alexandria) the limitations of both Jewish monotheism and Sabellian notions of the Trinity: He clearly conveyed to us something else on God’s part. Chrysostom in his second sermon on Genesis had simply read the plural verb (a matter “of grammar alone. 22.”19 In comment on Ps 45 we saw him making an exception (if only to resist Jewish claims that Solomon is in focus). He is obliged to bring out also the particular properties of the persons. by way of refutation of the Jews and those under the baleful inﬂuence of Sabellius . Genesis. “God your God anointed you with the 16 Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. “Let us make.184–86). without a direct bearing on the meaning. 7) to suggest the honor shown humanity (SC 433. see Chapter Six. For discussion of the authenticity of the work. when after an assertion of the central ﬁgure’s royal and even divine status v. 19 Les commentaires patristiques 2. but “in image.” you see. “God said. 18 Commentarii.16 Theodoret also takes occasion of Isa 48:16. 303. in images. .
theological accents in old testament commentary 173 oil of gladness beyond your partners. 290. are not always susceptible of precise application to this mystery. “an invaluable source in our eﬀorts to understand his Christological thought.20 He thus distinguishes between equality in nature and the human condition assumed by Jesus. in being something put on from outside. “Myrrh. 8 of that Ps 45 accorded messianic reference by Diodore. 21 For an insight into Theodore’s reputation for orthodoxy in the Syriac Church. . Such an interpretation of psalm verses Theodore is also seen resisting. Greer in “The Antiochene Christology of Diodore of Tarsus” might well have made a reference to the Commentary on the Psalms. he referred to nature. and in another case God your God anointed you. We ﬁnd him resisting an Arian subordinationist interpretation also of Ps 2:8. “Theodore of Mopsuestia’s Commentarius in evangelium Johannis apostoli: Text and transmission. however.” Aug 43 (2003) 473–93. In building a case (against Alois Grillmeier) for Diodore’s Christology to be seen as truly Antiochene. while inside there was the divinity on the basis of indwelling. O God. In fact.” thus grouping him with other gifted ﬁgures.” proves to be one such in Theodore’s unhappy phrasing: By his garments he nicely referred to the body. Diodore feels a distinction called for. is forever. in the face of Arian and Apollinarian opponents and an Alexandrian response that imperiled the reality of Jesus’ humanity. of course. one gets the overall impression of a young if unschooled theologian trying. he was anointed with the Holy Spirit. here he introduces the Incarnation.” see G. to express the hypostatic union (not a term he employs. of course) in way that clearly distinguishes between the two natures as deﬁned by Nicea and (later) by Constantinople I without giving the appearance of a two sons Christology. Kalantzis.21 Figures occurring in the text of the Psalms. 272. resin and cassia from your garments. In the above case. 22 Le commentaire. upholding the two natures while denying subordination. taking all his Christological statements together from this work.22 20 Commentarii. that while the others who were anointed were anointed with oil of prophecy or priesthood or royalty. The Syriac version introduced into the text foreign elements that had the eﬀect of “skewing our undertstanding and interpretation of his Christology” (493). v. He uses the phrase beyond your partners in this way. Here again he makes mention of the Incarnation (oﬁkonom¤a). and the Greek text of his Commentary on John. or how he was able to call the same person God in one case as in the above verse Your throne.
148 that denies him the term theologian “au sens strict de ce mot” in Bardy’s view. Kelly. he goes on to conclude that even the apostles.23 In his next work.24 If Zerubbabel is accorded priority to Jesus as a fulﬁlment of prophecy. 23 Cf. 25 Quoted by Wiles.” 24 Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius. coming from him.6. 144. Hill. and one in being with him. did not grasp the divinity of Jesus.” 491.” 672. Cf.26 Along with his respect for divine transcendence (seen in his warnings about anthropomorphisms) go frequent accents on the humanity of Jesus and litanies of the deprivations that involved. it is the preacher’s task to reﬂect also on words that are perfectly clear and to speak about them. and occasionally his language seems almost to suggest that the Word adopted a human being who was already in existence. on The Twelve. 326. “Theodore of Mopsuestia as a representative of the Antiochene school.174 chapter nine His good intentions are not suﬃcient to avoid the impression of an adoptionist Christology. on the basis of John 16. but they would truly know the Son when they knew him to be God in his being. 26 “Jean Chrysostome.” .25 It is perhaps his being content to joust brieﬂy with a bevy of infamous heretics in Pss 110. a risk Antioch’s two nature Christology always ran. either: They had heard word of the Father obscurely. Chrysostom wisely decides that the pulpit is not the place for theological elaboration and reﬁnement of Old Testament texts.205. in denying knowledge of the Trinity to the Old Testament people in comment on Zech 1 (above). as in Homily 23 on Genesis. having learnt the axiom that Theodore recites in his Commentary on John.27 That much-debated Gen 1:26 text leads him in Homily 8 to urge his congregation to hold fast to “the dogmas of the Church” (not a familiar phrase of his). I judge the exegete’s task to be to explain words that most people ﬁnd diﬃcult. 27 PG 53. without using the term. taking it in human fashion. it is only on account of Theodore’s foreshortened hermeneutical perspective. Early Christian Doctrines. 305: “It is characteristic of (Theodore) to describe the humanity as ‘the man assumed’. Theodore upholds the homoousion of the Son. “St John Chrysostom and the Incarnation of the Word in Scripture. 145.
as one who led the oriental bishops at Ephesus and was instrumental in drawing up the Symbol of Union and also in eventually having the council of Chalcedon convened. he feels he must. as in the Isaiah Commentary). the cedar of all trees not going rotten. declare his colors. cannot aﬀord to be simply apophatic. and the manner of each is a matter for silence. the manner even in this instance I do not grasp: the generation of each nature is a matter for confession. how so I do not know. and by cedar referring to the human nature in its not being aﬀected by the rottenness of sin. while the fact that he was born of the virgin I understand. without seeking controversy (except where Alexandrian inﬂuence is felt. as is also a certain insecurity in regard to confessing the hypostatic union in Jesus (not an Antiochene phrase). Chrysostom’s reluctance to pry further into the birth of Jesus from Mary (unnamed). 29 28 .73. and the Antiochene commentators’ general reticence compared.30 PG 53. to those holding Arian views. From his early work on the Song his Antiochene dyophysitism is patent.28 In the ﬁrst of his homilies on the obscurity of the Old Testament. showing them that the words have reference not to some one of the ministering powers but to the only-begotten the only Son of God himself. 312). He goes out of his way to interpret Cant 5:15. like cedars.164. yet I do not abolish the fact owing to my ignorance of the manner. on the other hand. calling the divine nature incense since by the Law incense was oﬀered to God. say. confess the truth ‘He was born.’ 29 An apophatic approach is better than an anomean.theological accents in old testament commentary 175 Argue the point in friendly exchange with Jews. 70–72. so too should you also act in the case of the Father: even if you do not know how he was born. Omelie. 30 PG 81. on the one hand. however. in reference to the obscure background of Melchizedek on the evidence of Heb 7:2–3. Early Christian Doctrines. As in this case of the virgin I do not know how he was born of the virgin but I confess he was born.2. “His form is like choice incense.4. prove from this text the Son’s equality (ımotim¤a) with the Father. with Didymus on the glories of the yeotÒkow.” in an Antiochene fashion: Here again she makes reference to the fact of two natures. Bishop Theodoret at his desk. perhaps arise from the conviction “that the incarnation cannot have involved the impassible Word in any change or suﬀering” (the view of Nestorius in his Heracleides cited by Kelly. Chrysostom admits his own limitations: While the fact that he was born of the Father I know.
On the other hand, 5:10, “My nephew is white and ruddy,” receives the following gloss,
She mentions white ﬁrst and ruddy second: he was always God, but he became man as well, not by abandoning what he was or being turned into a man, but by putting on a human nature.31
This twofold pattern appears in all Theodoret’s Old Testament commentaries, without swamping them; one feels the commentator needs— with typical conciseness—to remind his readers of crucial dogmas, if not “of the Church” (in Chrysostom’s term), at least of the church of Antioch. There is little reason for Christological embellishment of Daniel beyond the Son of Man pericope in 7:13, again presented in typically Antiochene dyophysite terms. The passage from that book to which most lengthy Christological attention is paid is 2:34–35 mentioning “the stone hewn out a mountain without hands being used;” after again rehearsing an arsenal of texts to confute Jewish interpretation, and borrowing the detail of the virgin birth from another source, Theodoret concludes,
So we learn from Old and New Testament that our Lord Jesus Christ was called stone: it was cut from a mountain without hands being used, being born of a virgin independently of marital intercourse.32
A phrase, “two natures in one person,” redolent of the Symbol of Union, appears in the next work, on Ezekiel, in relating 11:22–23 to the ascension of Jesus, along with other typical expressions. His response to Theodore’s commentary on The Twelve involves an insistence that the true fulﬁlment of earlier prophecies is not Zerubbabel but Jesus; “the one who sent is Lord almighty, and the one who was sent is the Lord almighty, and there is no diﬀerence in status,”33 he says on Zech 2:9. Theodoret’s Psalms Commentary, composed in the 440s as was his Eranistes, admits a Christological interpretation of them not found in the earlier Antiochenes, while retaining typical accents. Ps 55 is taken to refer to the passion of Jesus, the realism of the language
31 Cf. Viciano, “Theodoret von Kyros als Interpret des Apostels Paulus”, 288: “Er hebt die unio hypostatica nicht genügend hervor. Das gilt auch für die communicatio idiomatum.” 32 PG 81.1303. 33 PG 81.1889.
theological accents in old testament commentary
excused on the grounds that “the terms should reﬂect the reality;” of vv.4–5 Theodoret says,
It was necessary, you see, for the nature which underwent the passion to be revealed, and the extraordinary longsuﬀering which the loving God had for our race; he underwent suﬀering in the ﬂesh, wishing also in this to be involved in our salvation.34
Theodoret had reason to know that trouble still loomed both from continuing Arian ideas of subordination of the Word and from Cyril’s inadequate terminology for grappling with them. Hence in giving a Christological interpretation to Ps 45:5 he takes issue with both, employing the Nicene talisman ımooÊsiow that passed into the Constantinopolitan creed of 381 to put paid to Arianism, and rejecting Cyril’s description of the union of natures as fusikÆ:
Thus he was also anointed in the holy Spirit, not as God but as man: as God he was of one being with the Spirit, whereas as man he receives the gifts of the Spirit like a kind of anointing. Thus he loved righteousness and hated lawlessness: this is a matter of intentional choice, not of natural (fusikÆ) power, whereas as God he has a rod of equity as the rod of his kingship.35
If this style of theology has been styled “fundamentally dualistic,”36 it also represents a balance in speaking of God made man. C. Moral accents Just such a balance, perceivable in the Antiochenes’ Christology where this emerges in their Old Testament commentaries, characterizes their thinking also on the moral life, even if it is not morality but the biblical text that is the principal, or at least nominal, focus even of most of Chrysostom’s exegetical homilies and sermons.37
PG 80.1272. PG 80.1192. 36 Young, From Nicaea to Chalcedon, 274. “Symmetrical” is used with the same intent, initially by Grillmeier and then by K. McNamara, “Theodoret of Cyrus and the unity of person in Christ,” 326. In a survey of Theodoret’s (non-exegetical) works, M. Mandac, “L’union Christologique dans les oeuvres de Théodoret de Cyr antérieures au Concile d’Ephèse,” 96, concludes that Theodoret’s Christology is “correcte tout en étant incomplète.” 37 Admittedly, the two short series of Chrysostom’s homilies on David and Saul
The careful—if sometimes uneasy—distinction of divine and human natures in Jesus by these dyophysite pastors is replicated in their careful—if sometimes uneasy—balance of the respective roles played by divine grace and human eﬀort in the moral life. Yes, the Fall has happened; but it is a felix culpa that ushers in God’s healing through the coming of the savior. Human nature and free will have not been impaired by that early reverse (“original sin” not a term of theirs);38 we are still morally accountable, even if we tend to misquote Scripture to discharge ourselves of accountability—yet natural law39 and positive law apply without the rigor of a Novatian.40 Antiochene Christology and morality are thus all of a piece with the rest of their Weltanschauung. Although Augustine felt it necessary to defend Chrysostom against charges by Julian of Eclanum of complicity in Pelagian positions,41 Antiochene Old Testament commentaries give little comfort to the
and on Hannah, though based on the text of the books of Samuel, spend most time on the virtues of the eponymous heroes—gentleness in David’s case, prayerfulness in Hannah’s, the former to make a point in a time of political crisis (see Chapter Six). Psalms classifed as moral receive a moral development by all the commentators. 38 In reference to Prov 2:5 in the Commentary on Proverbs, Chrysostom sees Abel “infected in some respect by his father’s sin (progonikØ èmart¤a)”—an early formulation of original sin? 39 It is in keeping with Antiochene moral reasoning that Diodore should in comment on the ﬁrst psalm uphold the primacy of natural law (Commentarii, 8): “Now, if it mentions law (v. 2), it does not oblige us to think only of the written Law but of the innate law, which is not coercive, as the Manichees say, but instructing the person prepared to learn. So do not allow the identity in terms to give rise to misunderstanding: law that is natural and linked to nature is referred to, which cannot be bypassed, like a person’s having a sense of humor, having two feet, going grey in old age. It is implanted in all people and in every individual person; it cannot be bypassed or altered, being also called a natural law because by it we can learn and distinguish what is for the better, like knowing that God exists, that it is good to respect parents and not to harm others. It is nature, in fact, that teaches each person this as if giving orders not to do to another what one would not want to suﬀer from someone else.” 40 Theodoret insists in comment on Ezek 3:20; 18:24 that one sin will not make forgiveness impossible for a repentant transgressor. 41 Augustine, Contra Iulianum 1, 22 (PL 44.655), refutes Julian’s claims that some of Chrysostom’s statements in his New Testament homilies on infant baptism amounted to a denial of original sin. A. Wenger, “Jean Chrysostome,” 336–37, struggles to uphold his orthodoxy, admitting, “Il est vrai toutefois qu’il a davantage insisté sur le rôle du vouloir humain que sur celui de la grace.” The view of Bardy, “Jean Chrysostome,” 477, is that “il n’y a pas, en tout cela, de théorie précise du péché original.”
theological accents in old testament commentary
Pelagians, if only by default in some cases. In what might seem perversity, Diodore—and consequently Theodore—decline to take as referring to David’s sin a key text, Psalm 51, the principal one of the early Church’s seven penitential psalms, interpreting it instead as the exiled people’s cry for forgiveness. Theodore seems aware of some such accusation of perversity by retorting, “At no stage have we given the impression of being dictated to by the titles,” this psalm’s title making the customary identiﬁcation. While both Antiochenes thus pass up the opportunity to speak on the topic of the Fall and its eﬀect on human nature, Theodore ﬁnds another occasion in Ps 39:5, “Lo, you made my days handbreadths,” to imply the mortality consequent upon that transgression:
God, of course, manages aﬀairs by a certain plan, making our nature subject to a sentence of death once and for all and rendering us capable of lasting for an acknowledged number of years.42
While Chrysostom, unfortunately, is not extant on Ps 51, Theodoret may be taken as giving the standard Antiochene position on the question in his commentary on v.5; while suitably vague about the transmission of the sin to later generations, he cites Paul in Rom 5:12, rightly taking the critical phrase §fÉ ⁄ in a causal sense:
He means that, by having control over our forebears, sin eﬀected some way or path through the oﬀspring. This is also what blessed Paul says: ‘Since, you see, sin entered the world through a human being, and through sin death, because all sinned.’
Theodoret proceeds to see further implications of David’s and Paul’s thinking:
We learn from all this that the force of sin is not part of nature (if it were so, after all, we would be free from sin), but that nature tends to stumble when troubled by passions; yet victory lies with freewill (gn≈mh), making use of eﬀort (pÒnoi) to lend assistance.43
Of all the elements of moral behavior in Antiochene thinking one single—but critical—element is missing here: divine grace. In the context Theodoret feels that for the moment he has to uphold other elements under threat: human nature after the Fall, the independence of the will, the individual’s contribution, and thus moral
Le commentaire, 235. PG 80.1244.
”45 There lies a continuing quandary for Antiochene moralists: how does divine grace relate to the necessity for human eﬀort? The human element in meritorious living can no more be downplayed than it can in the person of Jesus. no point in sheeting the blame home to some malevolent deity on the grounds of being unaccountable. and so when all of us sinned.13. I said this lest you think you have been badly aﬀected by the ﬁrst human beings. .” about the proverbially righteous man. grace outweighed sin. As Diodore comments on Ps 1:3. people’s ways are not their own. once it was introduced those who came afterwards ratiﬁed it by sins of their own . When Chrysostom speaks on Genesis in the Lenten sermons of 386. The human being did not sin to the extent that God gave grace. a tendency of which Chrysostom found his listeners guilty in “mangling the limbs of Scripture” by glibly citing Jer 10:23. God working and cooperating with him. 14:1. 10. All of these—and the role of grace—the other Antiochenes also in their commentaries on the Old Testament include.” eliciting a necessary clariﬁcation from Theodoret at this point—though much of his own and the other Antochenes’ usage is often exclusive. of course. . =&yum¤a. 127:1. if not to be morally reprehensible. pÒnoi.180 chapter nine accountability. “Whatever he does will prosper. so how leave room for the divine? In introducing Ps 4 Diodore continues in the same vein: SC 433.” or misquoting Haggai 2:8.3. .44 And the sin of these ﬁrst parents? Indiﬀerence. but presents it positively.324–26. Rom 9:16. gn≈mh. Moral responsibility cannot be abdicated by this lazy ruse: we must do our best. Commentarii. “Lord. See Chapter One on the inclusion of women in their congregations and readership. The LXX here does in fact address simply the “man. the shipwreck was not as great as the commerce—instead. While they were the ﬁrst to sin and thus introduced slavery through disobedience on their part. If that is the primal sin—indiﬀerence. 45 44 . sloth—the individual must make eﬀorts. Chrysostom’s homilies and sermons in this diagnosis are at one with Theodoret’s analysis. the good things outweighed the bad . “To such a person everything comes simply and easily. the capital sin. we are accountable. nor will human beings make progress or direct their own going. . Pss 10:11. negligence. 1 Cor 7:8–9. as we have. he speaks of a Fall. human nature was not impaired by the sin. It is all up to freewill. and God will (then) match that eﬀort with his grace. the mindset. the loss was not as great as the gain.
“Théodoret. the Antiochenes insist. He rightly calls the Church queen to bring out the high dignity she attained from union with Christ. Théodoret n’est pas moins incomplet.47 Theodoret in commenting on Romans likewise rewrites Paul to nuance the gratuity of divine mercy with his own codicil on the need for human eﬀort.178. which came to her through faith. Cf. Rather. 48 Cf. 50 SC 276.”51 Commentarii. including original sin: “On voit sans peine les insuﬃsances et les lacunes de cette doctrine. Hill. calling them to repentance. from a completely unknown foreigner threatening them with destruction and adding nothing further. “Faith does not suﬃce for salvation: there is need also for the practice of virtue.” and he represents the prophet requiring his eighth century audience to proceed also to “approach saving baptism” and “other forms of virtue. Lorsqu’il s’agit de la grâce et de sa necessité. each beneﬁts from God’s oversight according to individual merit. Hill. 21.” Bardy. 51 Early Christian Doctrines. Old Testament prophet and apostle both have too simplistic a notion of the economy of salvation. reviews his stance on these moral matters. it is obvious he also mentioned God.theological accents in old testament commentary 181 It is the greatest form of providence that all alike—sinful and righteous—are not granted the identical lot.” 49 Le commentaire. it cannot all be left up to divine grace. “Theodoret wrestling with Romans. not even letting the listeners know by whom he was sent. in that Ps 45 where Theodore is prepared to see the queen representing the Church. 5. the Lord of all. Kelly.46 It is easy to see how Theodore ﬁnds it necessary to amend the text of Jonah when he ﬁnds Nineveh oﬀered conversion and achieving it simply on a few words spoken by a stranger: They could never have believed in God on the basis of this remark alone. 373.”50 No. Faith is certainly not suﬃcient of itself—in fact. and said he had been sent by him. 288. Theodori Mopsuesteni commentarius.” acquits them of the charge of Pelagianism “unless the Eastern attitude generally is to be dismissed as Pelagian. instead.49 Theodoret in his Isaiah Commentary remarks on 1:23.” 323. “A pelagian commentator on the Psalms?” 47 46 . 186. and he delivered the message of destruction.48 and he rewrites Ezekiel also. it is the product of human initiative. admitting of them only “an intensiﬁed emphasis on individualism. he comments on v.
. on the other. We need now to examine whether Antiochene pastors’ moral views arising from Old Testament texts catered also for adequate spiritual development. Terms like “dualistic” and “symmetrical” applied to the Antiochenes’ Christology might be thought by some analysts to be applicable to the moral accents in their works as well. others would see simply a carefully developed balance.182 chapter nine Is it only a common position of eastern moralists in this period that the Antiochenes maintain in their Old Testament commentaries? We might need to look at their works on the Gospels and Paul to assemble more evidence of particularity. on the one hand. What does strike today’s reader. is the uniformity of their position on morality (beyond a lack of sureness of touch when it comes to stating the balance between grace and human eﬀort. comparable to their infelicitous expressions of the hypostatic union) and the insistence that that human element not be downplayed and. the consistency of this position with their understanding of the person of Jesus and their Christian worldview as a whole. Pastors tend to accentuate the need both for divine grace and for personal commitment in their ﬂock.
the subject of previous comment. for instance. Listen now to the words of Sacred Scripture: “For Adam. “For Adam. Christian Antioch. instead. of course). like Ruth and Chronicles. ékr¤beia. a process that was the beneﬁciary of other traditions as well. and hence the treasure to be found in even a single syllable is great. there proved to be no helpmate of his kind. the accent in faith education in the Bible fell upon comprehension. did not supply for a full grasp of the text.CHAPTER TEN PASTORAL AND SPIRITUAL GUIDANCE Commentary on the Old Testament was but one form of transmission of the faith in the churches of Antioch in the fourth and ﬁfth centuries.1191. of the author. while the Questions genre adopted by himself and Diodore was directed at a grasp of ticklish details in the narratives of a Yahwist. After all. however. . if ever. acting out of idle curiosity.” What is the force of this brief phrase. they are not simply words.”1 whether thereby qualifying as Aristotelian or not. For Adam? Let us not be heedless in our anxiety to explore these matters. 96. In keeping with an educational philosophy that seems to have shown a preference for a “concentration of mind upon observable facts.1. PG 53. Appreciation of textual details was also part of Chrysostom’s aim in preaching on Genesis. scores of times in his homilies he urges his listeners to note the precision. liturgical singing of odd verses from the Psalms. Old Testament books not frequently. at least those able to proﬁt from Theodoret’s works. but words of the Holy Spirit. as he does with the adversative particle d° in Gen 2:20.2 1 2 Wallace-Hadrill. however”? Why did he add the particle? I mean. were at this time introduced to readers. let us act so as to interpret everything precisely and instruct you not to pass by even a brief phrase or a single syllable contained in the Holy Scriptures. Elohist and Deuteronomist (terms not familiar to the commentators. 102. would it not be enough to say.
If we thus strengthen ourselves each day—by reading (énãgnvsiw). by spiritual discourse (diãlejiw)—we will be able to remain unconquered. Chrysostom speaks in similar terms in Sermons 7 & 8 on Genesis. .” he 3 PG 53. A preacher like Chrysostom did not disappoint that expectation. he closes Homily 10 with a recommendation to his congregation to reinforce what he has been saying. we will be able while relaxing at home. In both situations attentive listening is required. by listening. Chrysostom aﬃrms. attention to detail will suﬃce. énãgnvsiw. even the reading of them at home in the family circle is reading out loud. this security. and render the snares of the devil ineﬀectual. this is spiritual treasure. and they expected commentators to provide more. Any time must be considered suitable for discourse on spiritual topics. to take the Scriptures in our hands and gain beneﬁt from them and provide spiritual nourishment for our soul . After treating of the ﬁrst creation story in Genesis. It was his explicit conviction that what was written in the sacred text bore on the lives of the readers. If such was the attitude of the pastor. This is our salvation. however. A. both before eating and after eating.3 Growth in faith as a result of access to the scriptural tradition of Christianity and the beneﬁt it communicates involves three stages.184 chapter ten Profundity is not requisite. like the reading in church during a liturgy of the Word. If we have a precise realization of this.90. and there were various ways in which the intended beneﬁciaries could access it. The preacher and his congregation Readers of the Old Testament in Antioch looked to the Scriptures for more than information. did it satisfy the needs of the ﬂock and do justice to the richness of Holy Writ? We need to examine whether both preachers in their pulpits and commentators at their desks in breaking the bread of the Word in Antioch went beyond simple explication to apply it to the lives of the faithful and encourage greater depth in spiritual development.8. . . And the third beneﬁcial process—“saving. While Bibles and other Christian books are readily available (we noted in Chapter Four). None of the processes he lists in this case are private.
“St John Chrysostom’s teaching on inspiration in his ‘Six homilies on Isaiah. 4 SC 277.pastoral and spiritual guidance 185 calls it—is spiritual interchange.142. Since. here there is living water. that follows upon reading and listening. In this instance he does not refer as a fourth process speciﬁcally to his own role as homilist in the way he proudly does in beginning his fourth homily on Isaiah 6 in one of his most sustained and memorable metaphors. here tightlywelded sermons.” The Old Testament oﬀers such a variety of saving material. is welcomed by everybody. who is carrying a man’s letters and is bearer merely of paper. There you ﬁnd brute beasts. again. there a sail.1. here rational souls. One recalls the image of the the Scriptures as the letters of the emperor delivered by an unworthy emissary in Homily 44 on Genesis: If such a man. to put it diﬀerently. so that you may gain a great reward for your appreciativeness. the storm-tossed ocean is steady— come now. Cf. employing as pilot the Cross instead of rudder and oar.1.’” 5 PG 54. here a tongue. here spiritual sermons. then. It is “spiritual treasure” that brings with it “a visit from the Spirit. there a breath of air. unfurling our tongue in place of the sail. here the pilot is Christ. Chrysostom assures his listeners. there a human pilot. there planks in the boat. here a visit from the Spirit. of a moral and hagiographical nature. there boats.5 There are thus multiple ways. the heaving sea is awash with tranquillity or. as occurs in a Bible discussion or prayer group. While the sea has water that is brackish. diãlejiw. Hill. here the travelers leave the earth and put in at heaven. calling on the grace of the Spirit in place of the breeze. there the travelers go from sea to land. let us launch the boat. so much the more would you be justiﬁed in receiving with great attention the sayings sent you by the Spirit by means of us. for them to gain beneﬁt from the text of the Old Testament mediated to them in church and pondered at home once they comprehend it.406.4 It is a noble image of the homilist in church as an instrument of grace bringing to the listeners the message of Christ to those on their Christian journey. as he says in his ﬁrst homily on David and Saul. our theatre is full or. .
such assistance was not readily forthcoming in written commentaries. Diodore and Theodore class only a few psalms (1. about a household. strictly speaking. In fact. and Diodore’s editor Olivier admits that “there are none that deal with individual morality.686.7. they rarely if ever moralize. a sail for the Spirit’s breath to carry the believers forward on their journey. if you want to talk about a king. you will ﬁnd a great abundance of these things in the Scriptures. 47) as moral. and in a preacher like Chrysostom they received assistance in tapping into the “spiritual treasure. lxxxi. profound insights are not of the essence. the seraphim in Isa 6 are models of reverence for God in contrast to Uzziah and the Anomeans. Hannah oﬀers instruction in godly education and prayerfulness. These narratives bring the greatest beneﬁt: it is impossible—impossible. there is a king here. by contrast. Commentarii. anyone can tap into narrative in particular. readers of the Old Testament in Antioch expected more from a commentator than observations on textual precision and documentary hypotheses. see. let us constantly revive the memory of this story both with our wives and with the children. The story of David oﬀers such a compelling example of gentleness and clemency under provocation (virtues an irate emperor in Constantinople in that year 387 might show to his delinquent subjects in Antioch). And so on. It is not simply that the diﬀerent genre does not allow for engagement with the reader to the same extent. B.”7 Occasionally they will concede that some sentiments in 6 7 PG 54. but also discuss it constantly with one another in our get-togethers.” To judge from Diodore. these pastors clearly did not see—or at least speak of—their pen fulﬁlling quite the role that Chrysosom’s tongue did. 35.186 chapter ten Let us not simply imprint this on our minds. Theodore and even Theodoret. . touching on the situation of all people. about political aﬀairs.6 As he said above. if about soldiers. then. For one thing. Likewise. though that is a factor: the writers studiously avoid trespassing on the role of a preacher. with their focus steadily on ﬂstor¤a. The commentator and his readers Clearly. I say—for a soul nourished on these stories ever to manage to fall victim to passion.
He does not resonate with the moving calls for social justice he meets in Amos 8:4–6. and boast. settling instead for a brief paraphrase in each case. “Diodore. it is rare to ﬁnd an aside like the following in comment on the water ﬂowing from the Temple in Ezekiel 47. mortal that you are.” 993. already admitted. L. and who is ready to see a sacramental reference in a text. which seems lifted from a common stock and in which for the ﬁrst time at this late stage he adopts the parenetic tone of a preacher. that it has general relevance. be full of joy for the reason that God does not close a blind eye to those against us. Smith. only at the very close of Ps 32. . in which Diodore recognizes the prÒsvpon of Hezekiah. He passes up the opportunity to develop a spiritual interpretation of the prophets’ message.” Cf. then. What. “by the grace of God bringing clarity” to them. is reluctant to apply the words of a prophet to the lives of his readers. too. Bardy.11): aware of this. you righteous ones. can nevertheles commend his subject for his “vie spirituelle et son souci d’apostolat. is the purpose of the psalm? Rejoice in the Lord and be glad.8 The contrast with Chrysostom’s pastoral engagement could hardly be starker. in whom the focus on ﬂstor¤a is not so exclusive. then. Hill. with its hierarchy of cultic and moral obligations: Has it been told you. all you who attend to virtue. what is good. 226. It has a strong emphasis on social justice”)9 and invoke a response from his readers. “Diodore of Tarsus as spiritual director. and what the Lord requires of you. Micah 3:1–4 and Zechariah 7:9–10 (“one of the ﬁnest summaries of the former prophets. loving mercy and being ready to walk behind the Lord your God? An exception is the sermon he delivers against divorce prompted by Malachi 2:13–16. in classing it as one of the Pentitential Psalms. other than doing justice.pastoral and spiritual guidance 187 other psalms have general relevance. 185–86. 8 Commentarii. does he implicitly admit what his church. concentrates on cognitive aspects of the prophets. Theodore in commenting on The Twelve. even when it almost demands it in that distillation of reﬁned Old Testament morality in Micah 6:6–8. Micah-Malachi.” 9 R. all you who are upright in heart (v. Even Bishop Theodoret.
since shallows are not deep. they will turn to salt (v. yet.10 Though today’s reader would hardly guess it. “A spiritual director from Antioch. . people in high places to keep an unblemished and unstained record in their particular status. they will not be without beneﬁt to the others: when corrected. He orders that all victims be without fault or blemish. however. diﬀerent though they be and oﬀered in diﬀerent ways. whichever way we take it.62 on Genesis of how the people came to be called Hebrews. as he does in his long reply to the opening “question” (a cue for the commentator. those choosing the yoke of marriage not to impair the conjugal bond in their association with one another. in squabbling over this: no harm is done to devotion. the love of many will grow cool” (Matt 24:12). we are caught up in indiﬀerence (=&yum¤a). through this instructing people in every walk of life to keep free of fault—those embracing virginity to live according to its norms. even ascetical. Cf. We see this happening at the present time: after growing in number. “No point. So he refers to those who are superﬁcial and only have a vestige of the message. So he says that those of this disposition do not receive a cure. 10 11 PG 81.1244–45.11 Such applications by the commentator to the lives of the readers. as is true of most of us.” Twice in the questions on Leviticus the bishop is tempted by the liturgical nature of the material to slip the limitations of the genre to make a pastoral. Hill. he closes debate by conceding. 158. In other words. observation. Theodoret will admit that there is a pastoral dimension even to the Questions on the Octateuch. people in servitude.11).” Theodoreti Cyrensis Quaestiones in Octateuchum. they will prove of further use— hence his saying they will turn to salt. people in poverty. The Lord also forecast a fate in keeping with this. in its turning and in its overﬂowing its shallows will not be healed. and in a word people of wealth. as shallows. not only the instructive word but also retribution imposed for sin are accustomed to put us on our mettle and ﬁll us with beneﬁt. however. are very rare.188 chapter ten At its mouth. of course) on the reason for laws on sacriﬁce. containing only water on the surface. “When lawlessness abounds. after debating the matter in Q. and those opting for the ascetical life to observe the norms of perfection. he says.
and that much of the spiritual elaboration of the text is gratuitous and arbitrary. and their readers are not led in that direction. suﬀering and relief—all the stuﬀ of spiritual awareness and growth. is profound and much celebrated. as if to say. Because with you is a fountain of life. through piety leading to you we experience you. neglect the intentions of its author and historical reference. We have only to observe Didymus in Alexandria at work on a text like Zechariah. even if we ﬁnd that by comparison the historical situation of the prophet and his community is downplayed there. Diodore. An asceticism without mysticism 189 And yet the potential of at least parts of Old Testament material for moral guidance. . love and longing. trust and abandonment. in your light we shall see light: thanks to you it is possible for us both to live and to be enlightened unto piety: In your light we see you. however (and Theodore under his inﬂuence). as in comment on Ps 36:9: He continues. that left his Antiochene successors unmoved. to see its possibilities for spiritual development and direction. rare it is for a verse to elicit anything like an insight into intimacy with God. they do not see them as spiritual or ascetical compositions.pastoral and spiritual guidance C. Though Diodore and Theodore may concede them some limited moral character of a general kind. as we have observed about Antioch’s hermeneutics generally. Is is true here also. The Psalms may oﬀer the reader (or worshiper) more than historical insights—lyrical expressions of hope and despair.12 Psalm 25 Diodore will claim—against the evidence—to be composed on the part of the exiles. Psalms like 23 (“The Lord shepherds me”) and 32 (“Happy are those whose transgressions are forgiven”) that express such moving sentiments are generally given short shrift. that a position is being arrived at in reaction against another elsewhere that seemed only to exploit the text. but he soon has to abandon the eﬀort and 12 Commentarii. sin and forgiveness. 213. is not willing or not able to approach them at that level. and use it as a mirror for commentator and reader rather than as a window on the past? Or is genre and context a factor once again? Certainly the treatment of the Psalms in Antioch varied at the hands of desk commentators and preacher. let alone the spiritual direction of its readers.
on the other hand.16 Antiochene congregations may not even have appreciated the change in tone. sixth. in the words of Weiser. contributing everything of our own. for the reason that we neither apply ourselves to it with assiduity nor have recourse to it in accord with God’s laws.” Chrysostom can rise to greater heights of spiritual intimacy that Theodore and Theodoret will not imitate. we may ﬁnd the treatment of the topic pedestrian and somewhat mechanical. “As the deer longs for living springs. he can lecture on “the art of prayer. praying in accordance with God’s laws. Hill. loll on the ground.” So learn the rules. ﬁfth. and dialogue with them in this fashion.” as he does on Ps 4: We are. when on the point of conversing with some people of a class above us we ensure our appearance and gait and attire are as they should be. A preacher like Chrysostom. pay little attention.2. In comment on some few psalms outside his longer series. In approaching God. “Psalm 41(42): a classic text for Antiochene spirituality.”13 the result being that his commentary degenerates into terse paraphrase.” 14 13 .” 16 Cf.15 While we appreciate the recognition that the Psalms are prayers. PG 55.14 Prayer is an art that can be learnt. do the shopping. and none of the commentators assumed that The Psalms. Cf. of course. but it is an exception. Beyond inveighing against the vulgar excesses of the idle rich in comment on Ps 49.85. is predictably capable of responding to the moral and even ascetical elements in the Psalter. fourth. to “a pensive soul earnest in its piety.190 chapter ten recognise it as expressing sentiments proper. neither will we gain beneﬁt from it. however. Hill. worthiness to receive something. follow the prescription. third. 15 PG 55. scratch ourselves. Being heard happens in this fashion: ﬁrst. persistence. by contrast. seeking things to our real beneﬁt. but if we do not know how to apply the medicine. not as aware as we should be of the beneﬁt of prayer. it is “medicine. 238. they may not have looked to their pastors as spiritual gurus. look this way and that. “The spirituality of Chrysostom’s Commentary on the Psalms.41. as on Ps 42. as we noted in Chapter Seven. Instead. we yawn.4. he says in comment on Ps 7. then. asking nothing earthly.
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role. Despite submitting the Song of Songs to a thoroughly spiritual interpretation in the Alexandrian style so as to oﬀset charges against it of eroticism, Theodoret only once in the course of commentary allows himself to apply a verse (2:7) to the spiritual lives of his readers.17 Why did these pastors in Antioch not feel it incumbent on them to plumb for their readers the spiritual depths of the Old Testament, even in its most lyrical and intimate passages of prayer?18 Were they reacting against what they perceived as excesses in the approach of another school, as Froehlich remarks of their hermeneutics?19 There is no question that Antioch’s approach to the Bible generally is feeton-the-ground rather than head-in-the-air, and this realism we have seen to be apparent in other areas of their worldview as well, such as their Christology and soteriology. So it is not surprising to sense a sort of reluctance, if not suspicion, when it comes to instruction on spiritual intimacy, if not mysticism. Louis Bouyer also sees a history behind this reluctance, a reaction which aﬀects “the whole orientation of spirituality.” As Bouyer sees it,
in the school of Origen, the tendency is to ﬁnd Christian dogma under its most metaphysical aspects, or Christian spirituality under its most mystical aspects (that is, what is connected with the life of Christ in us).
In this tendency Antioch would ﬁnd elements of “fanaticism” (Bouyer’s term), as they would likewise not follow Didymus in the direction of layers of spiritual meanings in Zechariah arbitrarily developed, or Cyril in understanding the Bible only in relation to Christ.20 Instead, Antioch opted for an “asceticism without mysticism,”21 if by mysticism is meant intimacy of relationship with Christ; that is something beyond elucidation, an area into which only Anomeans pry. The art of prayer can be acquired by following six clearcut rules, Chrysostom
Cf. Hill, “A spiritual director from Antioch.” Cf. Guinot, L’Exégèse, 75–76, in reference to Antioch generally and Theodoret in particular: “Cette exégèse reste le plus souvent fermée à la dimension spirituelle et mystique du texte scripturaire: elle ne pouvait donc que souﬀrir d’une comparaison avec celle d’Origène ou de Grégoire de Nysse, dont c’est là un des attraits et la richesse.” 19 Cf. Froehlich, Biblical Interpretation in the Early Church, 20: “There can be little doubt that the hermeneutical theories of the Antiochene school were aimed at the excesses of Alexandrian spiritualism.” 20 Cf. Wilken, The Theology of St Cyril of Alexandria, 21. 21 Bouyer, The Spirituality of the New Testament and the Fathers, 436–46.
says, the ﬁrst being “worthiness” and the ﬁnal one “contributing everything of our own.” Theodore declines to engage with the moving presentation by Hosea 1–2 of the Lord’s uniting himself with his people in the intimate relationship of marriage. The spirituality of the Song, Theodoret decides, is best left to individual meditation. “Do you want to learn how Isaiah saw God? Become a prophet yourself.”22 Anomeans, take note. To judge from the many references to the obscurity and problems (aﬁn¤gmata) of Old Testament texts made in the works of the Antiochene commentators, and from their promises to bring clarity to such texts, clariﬁcation was thought a considerable beneﬁt in its own right, a worthwhile contribution to the transmission of faith of the Antioch communities. From this point of view, it could be said that their work in promoting comprehension was pastoral in itself. Yet the inspired Word oﬀered more to its hearers, at least of a moral and hagiographical nature, as well as providing models of prayer and converse with God and inviting a response. Engaging with his congregations, Chrysostom constantly unpacked this “spiritual treasure,” taking occasion to apply it to their daily lives—even if we may demur when claims are made for him as “the precursor if not the initiator of a spirituality for the laity,” for whom “he traces the way.”23 That Diodore, Theodore and Theodoret as authors of written commentaries in Antioch did not aspire to do the same at their desks suggests that Antioch did not encourage such a moralistic approach from any pastor not a preacher, and certainly did not support any exploration in the Bible of spiritual intimacy and mysticism of the kind favored elsewhere, where terms like “mystical” came more readily to biblical commentators. Today’s readers, accustomed to a per-
22 Chrysostom, Homily Six on Isaiah 6 (SC 277.206.1). Wenger, “Jean Chrysostome,” 339, points out that Chrysostom will forsake this agnosticism in his homilies “On the incomprehensible nature of God.” He is not accorded a place by D. G. Hunter under a heading “Patristic spirituality” in M. Downey, ed., The New Dictionary of Catholic Spirituality, Collegeville: Glazier, 1993, 723–32. 23 Bouyer, The Spirituality, 446; A.-M. Malingrey, “John Chrysostom,” in A. Di Berardino, ed., Encyclopedia of the Early Church, 441. The latter’s description of Chrysostom as “the most illustrious representative of the school of Antioch” may be thought partial and unnuanced; cf. B. Smalley, The Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages, 18: “He was by far the best known representative of Antiochene principles in the West and, at the same time, the author who could teach his readers least about Antiochene exegesis.”
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sonalist approach to spirituality, may ﬁnd Antiochene commentaries by comparison relatively unspiritual in that sense, though never crass or jejune. If that observation is thought impertinent, it is made in the belief that the commentators of that age are not irrelevant to the interests of ours where the “spiritual treasure” of the Scripture is concerned.
including Psalms commentaries by them all. such as in 1 Theodoret’s claim of his own work on the Song (PG 81. it demonstrates these churchmen’s commitment to the formation of their ﬂock in the faith by the biblical tradition of Christianity in particular—though we also get some incidental insight into the community’s liturgical tradition in the process. allows us to gain some impression of Antioch’s considerable achievement. If Theodore had in fact written commentaries on the major prophets. and if Diodore had also left what he is credited with writing on that biblical corpus.32. and John. that valuable source of Theodoret’s. If it were in fact Theodore’s work on the Song that Theodoret scorns in his own preface. bedewing the whole world with the streams of his teaching to this very day. A. great light would have been shed especially on the hermeneutical perspective of early Antioch. would we have thus been regaled with further commentary upon it “according to the norms of allegory”?1 Probably not. A commitment to pastoral care For one thing. which it seems he disagreed with more often than not. . despite the silence on this of councils and Greek historians. If Diodore’s Questions on the Octateuch had survived in its entirety. and if along with it we also had the commentaries written by “Diodore.CHAPTER ELEVEN ASSESSING ANTIOCH’S ACHIEVEMENT One can only wonder what might have been our estimate of the extent of the achievement of the Antioch commentators of the fourth and ﬁfth centuries. the large amount of their work that we do have. In any event. we might have gained a further inkling into the progression of Antiochene exegesis and commentary. from Diodore to Theodoret. if all their works on the Old Testment were extant like those of the bishop of Cyrus.” as he says were then available. 40). the noble champion of piety.
at times settling for transliteration or omission of diﬃcult Hebrew terms. “All of them put their scholarly techniques to the service of preaching.” 104. Even with the best of exegetical skills and resources at their disposal. or because they acknowledged a Christological dimension in the Old and not only in New Testament writings. today’s commentators admit the same about books like the Psalter.188. 4 The claim of an unfriendly Leontius of Byzantium in the sixth century. The repeated references to aﬁn¤gmata in Old Testament texts and Chrysostom’s formal treatment of the topic show it was uphill labor. because they recognized its divinely-inspired character. It is not as though the work of commentary was an easy burden. they represent an enormous investment in faith formation by zealous pastors. Unfriendly critics ancient and modern may claim the Antiochenes were “killing the Word of God”4 in the way they discharged this self-imposed task.” in Chrysostom’s view. As a corollary.1). relayed (not unsympathetically) by O’Keefe. the extant works testify to the esteem in which the commentators held these Jewish scriptures. Sermon 2 on Genesis (SC 433. the Antioch faithful believed they were being well served. 185. because they regarded it as vital to the faith development of their congregations. but if we can believe Chrysostom’s applauding congregations and the repeated requests to a busy man like Theodoret in Cyrus for more and more commentaries. “ ‘A letter that killeth’. despite being unwilling to see Jesus there at every hand’s turn as had commentators from another school. whose “meaning belongs to us” even if “the books are from them. The Septuagint version in the form which they received and in which they and private readers read the Old Testament was less than perfect. and Biblical Exegesis. for one) they gave a priority to laborious commentary on this literature.196 chapter eleven the homilies of Chrysostom delivered in the churches of Antioch proper. 3 2 . Chrysostom. admittedly Jewish and obscure. Whether the works are now available to us to read or not. no matter what view we take of the pastoral character of the material or the pastors’ aspirations or success as spiritual guides. yet it is these in particular that received attention in Antioch at that time.3 The question has to be asked as to whether (in the case of Theodoret. the Octateuch and some of the Prophets.”2 Frances Young reminded us.
though the text of the Old.”5 was rhetorical to the extent of allowing them to imbibe the literary principles of the academy and hermeneutical principles that would aﬀect their way of relating the Old to the New Testament in a way diﬀerent from students in another school. Omelie. . as any work of literature stands alone. evident also in the sacred history told in its pages. 5 6 Wallace-Hadrill. both are divinely-inspired. But not all of them did. even if the latter “talks about more important things. 96. had value in itself. B. sugkatãbasiw. if the commentator had access to them or troubled to consult them. If they did not have sound linguistic equipment to qualify them as exegetes strictly speaking. Jewish as it may be but interpreted in a non-Jewish way (unless one were a Ioudaiophrôn). an experience that may have embittered him. in its language and the concreteness of its expressions (too crass at times for critics and commentators of another school). it came from the same source as the New. Christian Antioch. 74. Chrysostom.assessing antioch’s achievement 197 often misreading terms and syntax. demonstrate more forcefully the divine author’s considerateness. One was a conviction that the Old Testament.”6 The same Spirit is at work in both. if not strongly philosophical beyond a “concentration of mind upon observable facts. Both testaments represent God’s ımil¤a with human beings. authors and text both. it did not require salvaging by being related to the New Testament. In Diodore’s case this experience included personal acquaintance with Athenian philosophers. It had a validity of its own. 102.3. they brought to bear their personal background (like a knowledge of Syriac in Theodoret’s case—a mixed blessing in Theodore’s view) and experience. A belief in the Old Testament The upshot of this was that these churchmen brought a mix of attitudes to their approach to the biblical texts they felt Antioch congregations needed to comprehend. Their education. we noted. Alternative versions were credited with being “clearer. as well as with persecution by tyrants trying to reinstate paganism in Antioch. and none of them was properly equipped to supplement the shortcomings of their local text.” like that of Symmachus.
robbing the Old of continuing validity? or is there operating instead. . Antioch (even from the time of Paul of Samosata and Lucian before our period)8 adopted a distinctive style of interpretation. and on the humanity of Jesus. . probably stand much closer in approach to Paul and to Lucian than they would ever have been prepared to admit. pneumatikÒw.” 489–90: “The leading ﬁgures of the Antiochene school of biblical scholarship in the fourth century . as Homer was best clariﬁed by Homer? Is that rhetorical adage a more appropriate hermeneutic than a platonic schema in which the historical and the ﬂeshly are discarded (by a Didymus in Alexandria. to judge from his few extant works. and to that extent was adversarial.198 chapter eleven If the story told in those pages is real. an “overarching narrative. Wiles. it spoke from experience. a Christological oﬁkonom¤a. a contemporary and adversary of Chrysostom in Constantinople. “Theodore of Mopsuestia. would be an exception in this regard. 176. which we can already detect in the scanty and biased accounts of Paul and Lucian. for Antioch’s distinctive stance towards the Old Testament? From the outset we have been shying away from the Young. Diodore and Theodore. nohtÒw? In opting at least partially for the reality of the Old. for the need to retain continuity with what was said and done then. e. Cf. C. then. on historical fact. where lies the reality. as can be seen in Eustathius. and discernible by an adequate yevr¤a. for example) for the mustikÒw.” in which continuity (or “coherence”)7 must be maintained with those historical events and characters? Can the Old be interpreted adequately within the conﬁnes of the Old. élÆyeia—already in those pages and events and characters? or must it be sought for more distantly. Biblical Exegesis. for the text as a window onto the past. in the New Testament and beyond? Is the Old just a mirror of the New? Must everything—events and characters—be seen as pointing forward to Jesus and the New. There is the same emphasis on the biblical text. 296.g. if in some respects misinformed (about the nature of allegory and Alexandria’s use of it. But it was not polemical to the extent of airing disagreements at length in public. 8 7 .9 cura pastoralis was not achieved through odium theologicum in its view (though ironically it will fall victim to such odium itself ). Accounting for Antioch’s approach How account. It represented a reaction against another style.” 9 Severian.).
“Das formale Verfahren. to a rationalist approach to the Bible and to Christ. 14 Bouyer.13 and we have seen Schäublin tracing the Antiochene hermeneutic to rhetoricians and grammarians like Aristarchus. too. Théodore et Nestorius marquent les étapes d’une même tendance vers le rationalisme biblique et christologique.11 Others come to the opposite conclusion: for Greer it is Judaism that accounts for their exegetical method. . 11 “La chronologie de l’activité littéraire de Théodore de Mopsueste. 439. does not invalidate the relevance of investigating the interrelation of the two in the approach to the biblical text adopted in Antioch and Alexandria. surveys opinions on the topic. similarly sees an allegorical reading of biblical texts arising from a particular ideology: “To construct an allegory or to read allegorically is certainly also to express one’s own ideology and worldview in conscious or unconscious dialogue with—or. as it explains the soteriology and morality we read there. Behind their approach to Scripture in general and the Old Testament in particular lies a worldview that expresses itself also in the Christological accents in their works. 110: “The respective positions of Alexandria and Antioch regarding exegesis developed from Judaism and within the early Church. in opposition to—the text from which one’s allegory is ostensibly drawn. The Spirituality of the New Testament and the Fathers.10 or rather was it the case that a particular exegetical approach lay behind Antiochene theology? If it is a complex question. Writing the Wrongs.” Diodore sensed such “opposition” frequently occurring in Alexandrian reading and the worldview it represented—hence his hostility to allegory. the theological errors into which Antiochene scholars fell (from Diodore and Theodore to Nestorius) can be sheeted home to their exegetical method. Rethinking Gregory of Nyssa.”14 In all these areas of thought and life can be 10 The placement of “ ‘philosophy’/’exegesis’ ” among “the false disjunctions of modernity” by Sarah Coakley. perhaps.12 others detect an indebtedness to Aristotelian thought or a rejection by Diodore of an allegorical approach in Neoplatonic authors. 242–43. 404–405.” 56: “Les germes de toutes ces erreurs se retrouvaient dans le méthode exégètiques de l’École d’Antioche: les trois noms de Diodore.” 387–89. 2.” 13 Viciano.” 12 Theodore of Mopsuestia. Was it their theology (or at least a particular philosophy of theirs) that led them to treat the biblical text as they did. Perhaps the outlook of Antioch’s commentators is more complex than that. which we have to this stage declined to enter. for Vosté. the solution is simple for some. Thompson. as well as the spiritual guidance given by the commentators that has been styled an “asceticism without mysticism.assessing antioch’s achievement 199 question of the relation between Antiochene “exegesis” (applied loosely and used rather in the particular sense of hermeneutics) and the theology held by members of the school.
” If it fails to appreciate apocalyptic scenarios of a prophet. Sancti Patris Nostri Cyrilli Archiepiscopi Alexandrini in XII Prophetas. E. has to deal with people (evidently of his own school. . Spiritual development occurs according to ordinary steps taken in imitation of biblical ﬁgures besides Jesus. at the outset of his Commentary on The Twelve (in which he seems aware of Theodore’s work). the concreteness of the language of obscure texts and the crassness of the conduct described there are a necessary implication of the incarnation of the Word in Scripture. like David and Hannah. it can arguably claim to be Christological in terms of the whole divine oﬁkonom¤a. salvation likewise is not simply to be accepted in faith but striven for by virtuous actions. congregations and private readers sharing such a worldview. mystical rapture bordering on the anomean and not worth considering. Alexandrian himself. human limitations are an essential element of the (other) Incarnation. If it is reluctant to interpret the Bible only through the person of Jesus.15 The human nature in Jesus is in no way to be etherealized or downplayed. and at least is prepared to grapple with the Octateuch. too. P. If this approach does less than justice to the range of religious sentiment expressed by the psalmists. The Old Testament yields itself readily to commentators. or who while accepting the reality could not stomach the distasteful character of the story (Eusebius of Caesarea). with the free will of an unimpaired human nature playing at least an equal part. the New Testament in homilies and commentaries at other times was available to plot the future—Antiochene works which lie beyond the scope of this volume. or in Paul’s term “the mystery of Christ. it resonates warmly with chroniclers and ﬂstoriogrãfoi.200 chapter eleven seen an emphasis on the human—without denial of the divine—as if to oﬀset a real danger of its being minimized and obliterated. Certainly. the art of prayer can be acquired by well-rehearsed rules. Pusey (ed. The human author of Old Testament texts and his factual situation cannot be bypassed in a process of moving—arbitrarily—to a range of spiritual meanings. Divine gift though it be. it sketches an oﬁkonom¤a in which Jesus himself can be shown to have participated through his lowly life and passion. and even acquaintance) who rejected the reality of Hosea’s marriage with a prostitute (like Origen. an elevated meaning is permissible in texts on the proviso that continuity be maintained with the factual. it seems). either. Cf. Antioch is not “mono- 15 Cyril.). 15ﬀ. I. If it is stronger on the past events of the oﬁkonom¤a.
however. Nassif. all amounting to a signiﬁcant chapter in the history of Christian exegesis and interpretation. Christian Antioch. 16 Wallace-Hadrill. “ ‘Spiritual exegesis’ in the school of Antioch. common patterns and individual accents within the one school of biblical commentary have been allowed to emerge in the above. 39. Hopefully.” and its authors “need separate monographs”16—another goal not attempted here.” 374. .assessing antioch’s achievement 201 lithic.
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D. Paris: Beauchesne. A. M. D. Cambridge: CUP.. Roma 1992.. Septuaginta 15. Commentary on Psalms 1–81. in Letture cristianae dei Libri Sapienziali. G.. Homilies on Genesis. FOTC 74. M. forthcoming Theodore of Mopsuestia.. forthcoming ——. 1997 Zaharopoulos. L. R. rev. Ezechiel. 82. David and Saul. John Chrysostom and the Jews. Théodoret de Cyr et ses principes herméneutiques dans le prologue du Commentaire de Cantique des Cantiques”.. Brookline MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press. trans. C. “Theodoret von Kyros als Interpret des Apostels Paulus”. A. 3rd ed. The Psalms. G. 2 Homilies on Isaiah and Jeremiah. 3 Homilies on the Obscurity of the Old Testament. Weinandy. A Study of his Old Testament Exegesis. C. Septuaginta 16/2. 1986. New York: Paulist Press. S. From Nicaea to Chalcedon. Threni. 1–21 Young. “La chronologie de l’activité littéraire de Théodore de Mopsueste. 1962 Weitzman. R. A Study of Early Christian Thought in the East.. English translations of Antiochene Old Testament commentaries by R. Septuaginta 13. Commentary on the Twelve Prophets. Exegese und ihre Hermenutik in Antike und Christentum. XX incontro di studiosi dell’antichità cristiana. Daniel. Susanna. Bet et Draco. “O SKOPOS THS ALHYEIAS. M. The Theology of St Cyril of Alexandria: a critical appreciation. edd. 1982 Weiser. Eng. Septuaginta 16/1. 419–435 ——. Old Testament Homilies. 489–510 Wilken. J. 2nd ed.. 2004 . 1 Homilies on Hannah. OTL.” in T. TGl 80 (1990) 279–315 ——.. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht. 1972 Vosté. 1989 Ziegler. “Theodore of Mopsuestia as a representative of the Antiochene school. Roma: Pontiﬁcium Institutum Biblicum.208 select bibliography Viciano. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht. Duodecim Prophetae. Jeremias. 1970. Theodore of Mopsuestia on the Bible. 87.” Dictionnaire de spiritualité 8. 1977 ——. Brookline MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press. “Jean Chrysostome.. trans. Berkeley: University of California Press. 2004 St John Chrysostom. A. Commentary on the Psalms 1–51. ed. WGRW. Commentary on the Psalms. 1998 ——. “Cyril of Alexandria as interpreter of the Old Testament. P. 1976 ——. OTL. 1963 C.. Rhetoric and Reality in the late Fourth Century. F. Cambridge: CUP. JAC 28 (1996) 370–405 Von Rad. 1999) Wenger.. Epistula Jeremiae. 1990. Homilies on the Psalms. F. Brookline MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press. 2003. 1974. F. WGRW. Baruch. Festschrift für Ernst Dassmann. Eight Sermons on Genesis. London-New York: T&T Clark. Lexicon Hebraicum et Aramaicum Veteris Testamenti. The Cambridge History of the Bible I.. The Syriac Version of the Old Testament (Cambridge: CUP.. Eng.. A.. 1983 ——. Ackroyd. F. 1982 ——. M. 331–55 Wiles. Philadelphia: Fortress. 1954 Zorell. 1983 ——.. Christian Antioch. Keating. edd. Evans. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.” RB 34 (1925): 54–81 Wallace-Hadrill. “Das formale Verfahren der antiochenischen Schriftauslegung: ein Forschungsüberblick. 2003 ——. 1943 ——.. A Guide to the Literature and Its Background. J. D. Hill Diodore of Tarsus.” in P. Biblical Exegesis and the Formation of Christian Culture. FOTC 108.” in Stimuli.. Z. Genesis.
2000. Lamentations. Commentary on Ezekiel.select bibliography 209 ——. forthcoming ——. forthcoming ——. Brookline MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press. Commentary on Jeremiah. forthcoming ——. Commentary on the Psalms. ECS 2. FOTC 101. Brookline MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press. forthcoming ——. Commentary on Isaiah. Questions on the Octateuch. forthcoming . forthcoming Theodoret of Cyrus. Commentary on Proverbs. 102. Brookline MA: Holy Cross. Commentary on the Twelve Prophets. Brookline MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press. LEC. forthcoming ——. Commentary on the Song of Songs. WGRW. Questions on Kingdoms and Chronicles. WGRW. forthcoming ——. Brookline MA: Holy Cross Orthodox Press. 2001 ——. forthcoming ——. Commentary on Job. 2001 ——. LEC. Commentary on Daniel. Baruch.
168. 164. 200 deuterocanonical Deuteronomist dianoia diapsalma didaskaleion Didymus 23. 131. 177 10. 60. 149. 41. accommodation Akkadian akolouthia akribeia alétheia Alexandria allegorical alphabetic anamnesis Anastasius Anomean anthropomorphism Antioch Antiochus apocryphal Aphrahat Aquila apocalyptic 100 161 65. 168 175 23. 97. 119. 57. 90. J. 131. 98. 92. 126. . 147. 129. 22. 178. 11. 143. 167–77. 97. 183 136–65. 197 10. 31. P. 36. 48. 164. 93 creed 29. 4. 86. 130. 167 6. 34. 27. 29. 161 110. 116 37. 181 33. 148. 95. 199 passim 22. 76. 191. 38. 188. 14 council ix. 29. 168. 7. 200 15. x. 169. 100. 173. 34.GENERAL INDEX Abelard. 94. 9. 103. 33. 149 71 17. 199 3. 125. 127. 191. 39. 168. 103. 105 Apollinaris apophatic Aramaic Aristotle Arius Aristarchus ascetical askétérion Athanasius Athens Augustine Augustus authenticity 27. 5. 145. 99. 142. 186 Constantius 3. 102. 175 Christology 5. 117 5. 60. 183 9. 97. 2. 60. 14 Constantinople 4. 198 passim passim 54. 93. 120. 122. 110 1 88 15. 130. 33. 12. 105. 199 15. 93. 152 23 51 55. 200 conciseness 99. 22. 147. 163. 168 Cyprian 105 Cyril of Alexandria 7. 66. 112. 115. 131 authorship baptism Basil Calvin. 192. 14. x. 110. 142 19–25 1. 128. 88. 100. 24 81. 40. 8. 34. 72. 100 catenae 47. 6. 96. 132. 171. 100. 38. 152 129. 157. 11. 88. 168 passim 4. 103. 167–68. 15. 112. 7. 3. 97. 18. 183. 74–82. 22. 124. 5. 91. canon catechesis 29. 178 3 75. 65. 72 8. 103. 154. 165. 65 Chalcedon ix. 27. 111. 177. 28. 6. 182. 69. 7. 189–93. 126. 71. 106. 173. 161. 29. 88. 113. 148. 39. 110. 126 41. 63. 123 Constantine 3. 48. 165. 15. 117 16. 169. 94. 172. 66. 90. 115. 53. 16–17.
139. 195. 117. 1. 2. 130. 97. 156. 178 110. 72. 168. 124. 137. 125. 200 3. 165. 175 22. 160. 103. 135. 197 96 Diodore doublet dyophysite eisegesis Elohist Ephesus Epiphanius Eratosthenes eschatological Eusebius of Ancyra Eusebius of Caesarea Eustathius imagery Incarnation inspiration interpretation intertextuality Ioudaiophrôn Irenaeus Jerome Evagrius evangelization exegesis factuality Facundus of Hermianae faith Fall family grammatical genre Gentile 20. 21. 195 9. 126. 127. 131. 138. 198 79. 116. 9. 106. 139–50 9. 120. 64. 147. 46. 99. 110. 199 Julian of Eclanum 78. 100 Jewish passim John Chrysostom passim Josephus. 126. 84. 114. 129 4. 75. 136–37. 167. 57. 154. 180 ix. 138. 92. 6. 55. 91. 130. 154. 177 175. 91. 154. 125. 105. 175. 136 passim 111. 10. 200 21. 108. 109. 87. 44. 115. 176. 138. 73. 129. 167 Justin 32 . 191. 198 106 1 passim 138–50 89 1. 85. 83. 51. 176. 6. 128. 71 10 41. 137 22 96. 139. 71. 114. 70. 143. 126. 49. 114 183 7. 121. 112. 65. 68. 49. 184 9 94. 158 44. 105. 148. 114. 125. 39. 11. 75. 96. 44. 171. 128 Judaism 21. 100. 127. 128. 23. 32. 87. 174. 141 127. 74. 105. 14. 132. 175. 148. 179. 51. 198 passim 15. 118. 91. 57. 130.212 general index 96. 5. 146. 9. 182 9. 129. 96. 178 Julian the Apostate 4. 178. 179–82 105. 50. Flavius 23. 130. 128. 99. 27. 168. 200 101. 27–45. 82. 107–108 27. 22. 149. 198 passim 96 175. 106 21. 77. 119. 56. 32. 96. 129 16. 147. 41. 189 2 gnostic Gospel grace Gregory of Nyssa haggadah Hebrew Hellenistic hermeneutics Hexapla Hilary Hippolytus historian historical Homer homily homoousios hypostatic union hypothesis 5 25. 112. 76. 95. 60. 162. 99 7. 189. 132. 51. 105. 98. 191. 37. 152 passim 4 passim 22.
5 61. 55. 109. 51. 64. 100. 133. 112. 73. 28. 196. 149. 49. 157. 58. 171 psalms passim pseudepigrapha 23. 15. 186. 36. 68 4. 3. 96. 57. 9. 68. 27. 12. 137. 97 Paul 1. 150–54 1. 179. 10. 51. 154. 77. 161. 11. 105. 152. 36 11. 88. 168. 11. 153. 86 13. 181 Pentateuch 21. 85. 102. 173. 14. 82. 24 Pythagorean 8 Questions rationalizing rationalism reading responsorium revelation rhetoric 100. 12. 119 29. 105. 112 Plato 8. 102. 33. 149. 103. 64. 108. 73. 113. 119 27–45 4. 183 65. 9. 179. 182. 69. 56. 167. 184 40. 112. 177 178 30. 39–42. 125. 132. 64 7. 16. 71. 2. 184–86 Priestly 78 prophets passim prosôpon 109. 108. 198 27 5. 89. 192 91 169. 32 Peripatetic 8 Persian 3 Peshitta 50. 131. M. 86. 85 11. 23. 90. 112. 56. 188. 21. 138. 34 Plutarch 10 Polychronius 127. 5. 200 ix. 81. 195–97 pax Romana 3. 181. 109. 192. 111. 90 118 passim 178 6. 64. 178 5. x. 199 ix. 117 40. 50–54. 39. 172. 14. 103. 7. 68. 200 Pelagian 175. 196 Octateuch oral oratory Origen original sin orthodoxy paideia pastoral 213 21. 94. 96. 78. 48–50 102. 148. 58. 195 6. 85. 10. 30. 121 27. 86. Manichees Marcion martyr Masoretic Mephasqana millenarianism moral moralizing music mystical Neoplatonic Nestorius Nicea Novatian obscurity 9 5. 110. 135. 199 Photius 9. 132. 59. 27. 123. 10. 96. 199 . 200 Preaching 11. 104 43. 199 199 6. 1. 47.general index kataphatic koinônia lectionary Lent Leontius of Byzantium Letter of Aristeas Libanius linguistic literacy literal literalistic liturgy 36 1. 141. 95. 99 Philo 8. 29. 155. 28. 88 ix. 104 philosophy 8–10. 108. 100. 56. 19. 48–50. 118. 85. 175. 171. 168. 126. 100–104. 66. 35. 138–50. 101. 151–54 15. 107. 76. 149 Porphyry 4. 103. 18. 78. 16. 167 3. 197. 9. 173 Lucian Luther. 124. 131. 17. 87. 111. 27. 30. 119. 59. 136. 107. 12. 41. 10 prayer 190–92. 29. 18 41 passim 119. 183–92. 189–93. 17. 6. 137.
56. 24. 95 theôria 9. 198 Theotokos 175 titles 54. 49. 85. 60. 72. 88. 47. 64. 169–72 Ugaritic Valentinus women worldview Yahwist 65. 172 1. 55. 173 168. targum 58 teaching 2. 74 22. 51. 72. 79. 118. 80. 86. 16. 114. 32. 47. 92 Syriac 154. H. 169. 109. 56. 88. 3. 145. 70. 198 singing 40. 71. 187 sages 12. 138 Socrates Scholasticus 9. 198. 16. 106 Savile. 86. 4. 66. 67. 162. 155. 180 85. 199–201 78. 125. 183 . 196 Symbol of Union 167. 135. 53. 88. 55. 160. 139. 99. 168 Theodotion 55. 38. 92 school 63 Septuagint passim Severian of Gabala 15. 138. 120. 73. 132. 75–76. 24. 103. 66. 119. 68. 21. 130. 119 5. 182. 42. 146. 104. 178. 103. 90. 49. 17. 126. 65. 27. 161. 158. 71. 208 transliteration 72. 49. 68 tradition passim translation 29. 196 trinitarian 5. 139 sophist 9 soteriology 19. 124. 200 stenography 11. 102. 168. 24. 158. 150. 184–93. 150. 199 Sozomen 139 spiritual 19. 53. 151. 175. 139. 105 Stoic 8 Strabo 10 subordinationism 173. 91. 117 Torah 21. 50. 65. 27 text 47–61 Theodore of Mopsuestia passim Theodoret of Cyrus passim Theodosius 6. 69.214 Rome Ruﬁnus Sabellius sacramental general index 1. 91. 73. 89. 176 synkatabasis 36–39. 130. 18. 155. 58. 183 skopos 9. 69. 197 7. 168 13. 125. 100. 177 Symmachus 55.
186 98 126 173 120. 180 65 75 47. 169. 190 44 13. 136 2 Samuel 5:6–9 13:18 Chronicles 2 Chronicles 26 Esther 8:14–17 Job Psalms 1 2 2:1 2:8 4 4:7 4:8 4 5 6 7 7:9–10 7:12 7:13 8 9 9:14 10:7–10 10:11. 174 149 153 183 122 51. 145.13 10:14 14 14:1 16:3 16:9 17:10 17:14 19:1 19:5 19:12–13 22 23 23:5 82 73 24. 93. 14–15 1:26 2:9 2:18 2:20 2:21 2:23 3 4:6–7 16:15 21:2. 70. 117 54. 183 104 36. 110 66 69 47. 169 23. 132. 189 125 . 53 159 20. 43. 43. 77. 161 141. 66. 132. 132 82 24. 103. 31 54. 9 30:11 32:28 35:13 Exodus 7:22 20:5 Leviticus 1:17 Numbers 22–24 Deuteronomy 5:1 6:4 24:16 27–28 32:15 Joshua 10:12–13 Judges 1:8 Ruth 1 Samuel 2:1–2 3:1 17 20:20 28 ix. 101 102. 149 49 138 138 4 37 169 153 154 73 81 1 1 154 81 111 82. 77. 104. 190 70 156 49. 59 40. 105 141. 65 89 53. 145 132 73 104. 183 36. 69. 103. 112. 24 23 24. 181. 112.INDEX OF BIBLICAL CITATIONS Genesis 1:1 1:6–7. 117 112 142. 180 66 112 111 65 52 1 87 156.
105 178 79 24. 70 118–19. 169. 121. 86. 174 5. 161 69:21 70 71 72 73:7–8 74:3 74:4–5 75:3 75:6 110 110:1 111 111:4 113:1 115:16 116:9 116:10 118:24 119 127:1 141 144 145 146 146:1 147:12–20 148 Proverbs 2:5 10–22 Ecclesiastes 161 71. 141. 180 40. 172 119 33. 60. 112. 71 40. 125. 36. 71 8:6 71 8:12 107 Isaiah 1:23 2:2–5 2:12 6 7:14 8. 86. 189 141. 174 44 54 5 71 52. 105 2:7 191 3:6 55. 71 5:15 175 6:12 55. 141. 143. 70 4:11 124 5:11 55. 156 77 177. 174 24. 181 173 173 156 13 54. 161 187. 104. 158 71 44 40. 141. 111 71 114 111 71 114 76 71 5. 174 35 35 158 5. 141 126 75 179 110 111 64. 119 70 47. 89. 179 143 177 67 71 71 91 71 31 67 156.216 24 25 27 30:8 31 32 32:11 33 33:5 33:6 34 35 35:8 36 36:1 36:9 37 37:20 39 39:5 40:10 40:13–17 41:1 42 44 44:12 45 45:1 45:5 45:7 45:8 45:9 45:15 46 47 47:4 47:7 48:2 48:8 48:9 49 49:11 50:16 51 52 55:4–6 56:6 65 66 68 68:2 68:26 68:33 69 index of biblical citations 71. 87 110. 54. 189 187 29 141 159 51 186 113 141 113 189 51. 190 169 17 75. 119 5. 105 Song of Songs 24. 75. 119. 143. 50. 145. 121. 86. 117. 156.13–14 14:2 14:14 181 116 131 30. 143 170 71. 185 72 136 131 155 . 190 120. 142. 186 120 40 119 152 52 121.
92. 144. 47.index of biblical citations 24-27 45:6–7 48:16 51:9 60 Jeremiah 5:28 9:9 10:23 10:24 16:1–9 23:24 31:34 36 Lamentations Ezekiel 4:4–6 8:2 11:22–23 16-17 21:30 23 28 31 33:32 38–39 47:11 Daniel 1:5–6 2:1 2:34–35 5 7 7:13 9:23 Hosea 1–2 1:1 1:4 2:19 4:19 5:13–14 9:2 10:12 12:9 12:10 Joel 2:19–20 2:28 131 14. 56 Amos 4:12–13 5:26 8 8:4–6 9:11–12 Jonah 1:9 3:4 4:1 Micah 3:1–4 4:1–4 6:6–8 115 53 115 187 162 68 76 116 187 116. 28 176 156 115 187 33 130 24 24 22. 156 171 Nahum 1:1 2:11–13 Habakkuk 3 Zephaniah 1:4–6 Haggai 1:1 2:5 2:8 Zechariah 1:7 2:9 4:14 7 7:9–10 9:1 14:1–2 Tobit Judith Wisdom of Solomon Sirach Baruch Epistle of Jeremiah 1 Maccabees 2 Maccabees 76 115 97. 24. 93 172 81 163 111 38 14. 99 24 24 . 23 22. 99 22. 162 187 217 161 171 47. 49. 92. 180 144 81 158 80 42 22. 158 158 129 41. 78. 123. 24. 96 188 80 128 176 24 41 176 95 192 146 148 148 115 115 52 120 53 37 116. 180 9. 23 22. 156 12. 99 148 72 176 156 72 156 149.
157 4:24 1 Timothy 3:6 5:17 2 Timothy 3:16–17 Hebrews 5:11 7:2–3 10:1 1 42 180 2 19 152 118 2 2 2 138. 79.218 3 Maccabees 1 Esdras 2 Esdras 14 Matthew 1:3 24:12 24:36 Mark 13:14–15 Luke 16:29 21:20 23:42 John 1:14 3:20 5:44 9:22 12:42 Acts 11:19 11:26 Romans 9:16 24 24 index of biblical citations 10:17 10:20 1 Corinthians 7:8–9 11:23–29 2 Corinthians 3–4 3:6 5:17 Galatians 1:14 1:18 2:11–18 4 155. 41. 158 155 17 19. 88 30. 150. 85. 88 157 188 48 130 35 130 122 162 121 121 121 121 2 2 180 . 29. 120 175 163 22. 23 75.
A. 55. 58. 206 Joosten. F. 61. V. C. 50 Hatch. 13. E. G. 106 von Balthasar. 148. K. 12. 199. 126. 203. B. 58. 103 Canivet. G. H. F. 58. A. 61. R. 70. 192 Drewery. 18 Chase. 29. 75. C. 146. B.INDEX OF MODERN AUTHORS Adler. 99 de Ghellinck. B. E. 51. A. W. P. 51. 51. L. Y. 121. 7. S. 204 Downey. 164. 23 Devreesse. 96. 173 Guinot. 206 Dahood. 91. B. 155. 58. 204 Chabot. 204 Greenspoon. 203 Bardy. 181. J. 205 Harrison. 19. 205 Hanson. 191 Gamble. 165. 11. C. 51 Harl. 2 Flanagan. 3. 6. H. 55. 15 Aland. E. R. 75. 98. 204 Graham. 148 Clark. 114. A. A. 21. H. 99 Fernández Marcos. 204 Chisholm. F. 92. 100 Ettlinger. M. D. B. 52. 203 Azéma. N. 71. 37. J. 204. 192 Jellicoe. 191. 94. 58. A. 204 Doutreleau. 203 Allen. 204 Brock. 29. 7. 112 Dumortier. 82. 71. M. H. 204 Fitzmyer. 203 Aubineau. S. J. 205 Hamman. 113. 3. B. D. R. 59. L. 92. 112. 121. J. 174. 11. 173. 71. R. N. 55. 64. 128. 137. 162. 38 Asensio. 99. 168. A. 139. 192. L. V. 102. P. 59. M. 20. 164. 50. 23. K. 111. 23 Grillmeier. 48. M. 65. F. B. J. 105. 48. 199. A. 204 Dorival. J. 139. J. M. 130. 203 Aland. 68. B. 204 Busto Saiz. 27. G. 39 Harnack. 203 Bady. 51. 16 Fabbi. 178. J. 60. 58 Brottier. L 33 Armstrong. J. R. 129 Alonso Schökel. 8. 204 Daley. 52. 151. K. 2 Eissfeldt. 103. 205 Hanhart. G. 8.-N. 100. 2. 109. 208 Brown. M. E. 199. 204 Geerard. G. 57. 29 Greer. 54. 204 Crouzel. 82 Bruce. 110. R. 37. 191. 203 De Montfaucon. 59. 58. 142. L. D. 204 Barthélemy. passim Hunter. 21. 63. 187. M. F. A. 38. C. R. 21. 204 Childs. 204 Faulhaber. 117. 9. M. 67. 41. 64. 117. 205 Heine. 156. J. 23 Froelich. 92. H. 203. 97. B. J. 204 Bruns. O. 50. 22. D. S. 204 Coakley. U. 154 Deconinck. 204 Cunningham. 203 Di Berardino. S. 86. 192. R. 131. G. 203 Dunn. P. 88. 121. 58. R. 60. 205 Henry. 204 Daly. R. 11 Augustin. 112. G. 100. 11. R. P. G. E. 154. L. J. 204 Downey. 50 . 103. H. P. 90. 101. 16. 204 Baur. 204 Barr. 204 Bouyer. M. 41. 59 Hanson. 47 De Troyer. 100. 167. P. 37 Fox. 205 Hill.
S. 155 Leroux. x. A. 158. 78. 206 Kalantzis. 121 Mingana. 141. 54. E. 92 Malingrey. 112. 124. 54. 206 Kannengiesser. 137. C. 96. 172. 92. 65. 63. 142. 192. 207 Viciano. 203 Paramelle. A. L. 13. 94. A. 160. G. 108. 81. 3. 94. H. 206 Schäublin. 199. 60. 125. 52. 52. 63. J. 208 Wilken. 155. F. 136. 44. A. 207 Thiselton. 27. 14. 58. 208 Wevers. L. 37. 109. 208 Wenger. L. 20. 4. C. 91. M. 2. 206 Mayer. 192. 208 Walzer. 203 de Lubac. J. E. 59. 196. A. 2. 13. 206 MacMullen. B. 207 Rylaarsdam. 5. 191. 8 Weiser. 15. 142. H. W. 199.220 index of modern authors Sáenz-Badillos. 207 Olivier. 164. 16 Mowinckel. 206 Mai. 79. 172 Sprenger. M. 206 Mandac. D. 207 Swete. 64. B. A. 2. J. 161. 161. 206 Kelly. 206 Mercati. 207. J. 112. N. 7. 126. 106. D. 207 Thompson. 208 Wright. 87. 206 McGinn. 17. 82. A. 208 Wallace-Hadrill. 132. 59. 207 Vawter. P.. 196. W. S. 207 Richard. A. 146 Vaccari. 38 Young. N. 78. 203 Kahle. 183. 3. 28. E. 174. 208 Zincone. 207 Smith. 139. 70. 208 Reuling. 9. 22. A. 177. 106. 151. 38 O’Connell. 207 Quasten. 207 Sundberg. G. 208 Zaharapoulos. G. 101. F. 198. 206 McKane. 63. 207 Van de Paverd. A. 37. 9. A. D. 58. W. 206 Kerrigan. B. 167. 21. 139. 57. 154. 94. 175. 137. H. C. M. 151. 207 Tigcheler. 55 Pirot. 177. 59. 199. 136. 207 Sorlin. A. C. L. 23 Wiles. 197. H. M. 113. 39. 24. 200. B. 117. 174. 137. K. R. 206 Mariès. J. 82. 150 Ternant. 103 Sanders. 51. A. 3. G. 20. von 20. 207 Siquans. 146. 88. 207 Rad. 154. 207 Smalley. 63. 34. 89. 10. P. 94. 20. 111. 90 92. 37 . W. 27.-M. 59 White Crawford. 187. A. 51. 125 Nassif. 167. 16. J. 129. 60. P. B. 111. A. M. L. J. 38. F. 155. 142. 81. 147. 181. 203 Sullivan. D. M. L. 165. K. 206 Meeks. 137. 104. F. 3. 109 Markowicz.-J. 13 McDonald. 87. 168. S. 8. 160. 108. 207 Simonetti. H. 207 Rondeau. 94. 102.-M. M. 93. A. J. H. 201. 207 Pusey. 143. 99 Pelletier. J. 121. 58. 198. 206 Neuser. 75. A. R. 164.-M. R. 93. 12. W. F. 18. M. 173. 4. 177. 206 McNamara. L. 138. 107. 137. D. R. 108. 158. 206 McGregor. W. 206. H. 208 Vosté. 169. 199. 10. 57. J. 167. J. 206 Klostermann. 176. A. 208 Weitzman. 50. J. 68. 203 Speiser. M. 6. 58 O’Keefe. P. 78. 90. 137. 153. 87. S.